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The Original Factory Shop reports loss of £2.2m

written by Bella Palmer

The figures come after the company outlined plans to open more than 50 new stores over the next three years and the hiring of New Look's chairman

The Original Factory Shop fell to a pre-tax loss in the year leading up to the coronavirus crisis, new figures have revealed.

The Burnley-headquartered company has reported a loss of £2.2m for the 12 months to March 29, 2020, compared to a profit of £69.5m in the prior year.

Its turnover also declined from £160.8m to £132.2m but its EBITDA increased from £3.6m to £5.5m.

The financial results have been revealed in newly filed documents with Companies House which were signed off earlier this month.

The figures come after the company outlined plans to open more than 50 new stores over the next three years and the hiring of New Look's chairman.

The expansion plans are set to create about 400 new jobs.

A statement signed off by the board said: FY20 was a reset year for the business with a focus on stabilising and growing EBITDA. The group enjoyed a strong year of underlying profit growth, achieving underlying EBITDA of £5.5m against £3.6m in FY19.

This result was achieved despite the result of being negatively impacted by the Covid-19 crisis which saw stores closed in the final week of the financial year, it stated. Profit growth was strong throughout the year but in particular over quarters two and three (July to December), covering the key trading period, which saw year on year EBITDA growth of £3.1m over these six months.

Following the restructuring and refinancing of the business in the prior year, the business performed well in tough market conditions, consistently outperforming the non-food retail market over the course of the year, it stated. Like many businesses, the group was impacted by the global Covid-19 crisis, with the consequent closure of our stores impacting revenues in FY20 by approximately £2.4m and EBITDA by approximately £800,000.

The improved financial performance enabled the business to focus on long-term investments, particularly in ongoing expenditure to refresh our stores and in new tills and EPOS in store enabling contactless payments to be taken across the estate, it stated.

The opportunity was taken to exit three poorer-performing stores during the year including our two clearance stores, the firm added. The business has clarity over its proposition and the locations that work best. The Original Factory Shop is well positioned given its strong value retail proposition to take advantage of the challenging economic conditions.


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