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Moss Bros Outlook Confident Despite Decline In Sales In Second Half.

(Alliance News) - Moss Bros Group PLC on Thursday said it expects its adjusted loss to widen in its current financial year amid lower footfall on the high streets and in the shopping centres of the UK.

The menswear retailer said it has made "good" progress in the 24 week period from July 28 to January 11, despite a challenging retail marketplace.

Moss Bros said it has focused on delivering full price sales during the second half of its current financial year, resulting in an improved retail gross margin, which expanded by 300 basis points year-on-year.

However, the retailer is expecting to report an adjusted pretax loss of GBP1 million for the second half, which ends this month.

In financial 2019, Moss Bros reported an adjusted pretax loss of GBP400,000. In first half of the current financial year, the 26 weeks to July 27, 2019, the company was just above breakeven at the adjusted pretax profit level.

Total sales for the recent 24-week period were 3.0% below last year and down 3.2% on a like-for-like basis.

One new store opened during the year-to-date, said Moss Bros, two stores were relocated, and two stores closed. The total estate is now 128 stores.

"Despite the delivery of progress against our strategic levers, we anticipate the year ahead will continue to be challenging until we see an improvement in consumer confidence and a stabilisation in footfall across UK shopping destinations combined with a re-alignment of occupancy costs to properly balance the costs and rewards of doing business in physical retail stores," said Chief Executive Brian Brick.

"We remain debt free, with a strong balance sheet, and are confident in our ability to deliver enhanced returns to our shareholders over the longer term."

Moss Bros shares were trading 2.7% higher in London on Thursday at 23.56 pence each.

By Evelina Grecenko; evelinagrecenko@alliancenews.com

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Publication:Alliance Newswire
Geographic Code:4EUUK
Date:Jan 16, 2020
Words:322
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