"Record" figures in the Easter holidays and May trading period have driven Premier Retail's gross sales up 70 percent, despite pandemic restrictions shutting stores throughout Victoria.
Premier Retail is reporting record growth in its latest trading update. The Group is announcing its total global sales up 70 percent on the comparable period of 2H20 and up 15.8 percent on the comparable weeks of 2H19.
The Easter and school holiday period was of utmost importance for Premier Retail this year, resulting in strong growth for the company. Paired with a ‘record’ Mother’s Day and May, Premier Retail is planning for strong trading conditions moving forward.
“Today’s FY21 EBIT upgraded range will represent another record result for Premier’s shareholders,” shared Mark McInnes, the CEO and Executive Director of Premier Retail. “The strategic decision taken last year by the Chairman and [me] to build our supply chain and significantly invest in wanted inventory for Easter, April school holidays, Mother’s Day and the winter season has ensured we are in stock, delivering strong sales and gross margin growth across all our brands.”
Currently, Premier has plans to reopen all 122 of its Smiggle stores in the UK and Republic of Ireland, which has lifted its lockdown restrictions earlier in the month. The Smiggle brand has been ‘severely’ impacted throughout the pandemic, which the Group believes will continue until the end of the financial year, at least.
The current restrictions in Victoria have all impacted the stores’ trading conditions, but this was balanced by regional Victoria re-opening its 49 stores on 4 June and Melbourne’s 228 stores re-opening today. Despite ‘volatile’ conditions on the current global pandemic, Premier expects FY21 EBIT to be in the range of $340 million to $360 million.
This range represents an increase of between 82 percent and 92 percent on the underlying FY20 EBIT of $187.2 million and between 103 percent and 115 percent on the FY19 EBIT of $167.3 million.
“The Group has successfully enabled customers to shop seamlessly either online or in-store during the COVID-19 health crisis. This has been achieved through the long-term strategic investments made in our online capability combined with our ability to reach mutual agreements with landlords to appropriately rebase rents,” McInnes said.
Strong customer demand for the enter product, strong online sales growth and profitable online performance is currently expected to drive the EBIT up range or FY21. Moreover, an ‘exceptional’ gross margin expansion and cost control culture will further push the EBIT for FY21.
“Throughout the devastating and ongoing COVID-19 health crisis, our absolute priority continues to be safety and wellbeing of our teams and our customers,” said Solomon Lew, the Chairman of Premier Retail. “The expected record FY21 EBIT result in today’s announcement is a great credit to the experience and dedication of our entire global Premier Retail team and our exceptional executive management, led by CEO Mark McInnes. The Board and I are extremely proud of our entire Premier Retail team and their diligence during these challenging times.”
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