Latest Financial Results

Presentation for the 12 months to 31 January 2018 (pdf)

Preliminary results for year ended 31 January 2018 (pdf)

French Connection Group PLC

Preliminary Results for the year ended 31 January 2018

French Connection Group PLC ("French Connection" or "the Group") today announces results for its financial year ended 31 January 2018.

Highlights:

  • Continued improving trading performance with Group revenues up 0.5% to £154.0m (2017: down 6.7% to £153.2m)
  • Wholesale revenue up 8.6% (7.1% CCY³) from UK/Europe and North America
  • Improved contribution from retail driven by portfolio rationalisation
  • Growth in LFL1 sales with UK/Europe up 0.8% over the year (2017: up 4.4%)
  • Further 11 non-contributing locations closed during the year but new concept store opened in Manchester
  • Composite gross margin of 45.2% (2017: 45.8%) due to the strong growth in the wholesale business
  • Underlying2 operating loss reduced to £(0.6)m an improvement of £3.1m on 2017
  • Closing cash of £9.5m (2017: £13.5m)

Commenting on the results, Stephen Marks, Chairman and Chief Executive said:

“We have made considerable progress across the Group over the last year and I enter the new financial year with renewed confidence off the back of that success. Our goal has been to return the Group to profitability and I believe we are very close to achieving that aim, given the momentum that we are currently seeing within the business.

While it is clear that the retail market in which we are operating in the UK is unlikely to improve in the near future, we have clear visibility on the benefits we will obtain from the ongoing portfolio rationalisation. In addition the reaction to our collections and strength of our wholesale orders both for the spring and winter seasons further underpins the performance going forward. Although we are only early into the year, I believe we are in a very strong position to make significant progress again.”



Notes:

 

Key performance indicators for the 52 week trading period are outlined below:

 

 

FY18

FY17

Var %

Total Group revenue (£m)

154.0

153.2

0.5%

Total Retail revenue (£m)

83.1

87.9

(5.5%)

Total Wholesale revenue (£m)

70.9

65.3

8.6%

Retail LFL¹ (%)

+0.8

+4.4

 

Stock (£m)

31.8

31.7

0.3%

Net Retail space reduced UK/Europe (sq.ft. ‘000s)

18.8

21.2

(11.3%)

Net Retail space reduced Group (sq.ft. ‘000s)

18.8

26.1

(28.0%)

Average UK/Europe Retail Space (sq.ft. ‘000s)

188.7

208.7

(9.6%)

Average Group Retail Space (sq.ft. ‘000s)

202.5

224.9

(10.0%)

Number of stores/concessions:

 

 

 

-           Operated

116

124

(6.5%)

-           Franchised, Licensed & JV

212

285

(25.6%)

Underlying gross margin (%)

45.2

45.8

(60bps)

Net cash position (£m)

9.5

13.5

(29.6%)

 

Notes:

1. LFL or “Like-for-Like” sales growth is defined as the year-on-year sales growth for owned stores and concessions open more than one year, including ecommerce revenues, removing the        impact of closed stores and reported in constant currency.

2. Underlying Operating Loss excludes profit/loss on store disposals and closures and other professional fees.

3. Constant Currency (CCY) is calculated by translating the year ending January 2018 at 2017 rates to remove the impact of exchange rate fluctuations.

 

The Directors believe they are best reflective of how the business is managed and are informative to shareholders in understanding the performance of the business.

 

Enquiries:

Neil Williams

Lee Williams

French Connection

+44(0)20 7036 7063

 

Tom Buchanan

 

Paternoster Communications

 

+44(0)7974 982366