RETAILER Marks & Spencer yesterday flagged the detrimental impression of Brexit on its companies in Eire, the Czech Republic and France, because it reported greater meals gross sales however a tumble in clothes revenues amid coronavirus-related restrictions.
It flagged potential tariffs on a part of its vary exported to the European Union, and “very complicated” administrative processes.
And it cited the potential for the “efficient UK-wide lockdown” lasting till Easter.
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M&S stated meals gross sales income in its UK operations within the 13 weeks to December 26 was £1.74 billion, up 2.2 per cent on the identical interval of final 12 months and a couple of.6% greater on a like-for-like foundation. Nonetheless, income in its clothes and residential departments over the quarter to December 26 was, at £787m, down 25.1% on the identical interval of final 12 months.
Shares in M&S completed 3.45p or 2.44% decrease at 137.9p within the wake of the buying and selling assertion.
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M&S stated: “The free commerce settlement with the EU means we won’t incur tariffs on our core UK gross sales. Nonetheless, potential tariffs on a part of our vary exported to the EU, along with very complicated administrative processes, will considerably impression our companies in Eire, the Czech Republic and our franchise enterprise in France which we’re actively working to mitigate.”
It added: “The announcement of an efficient UK-wide lockdown, doubtlessly enduring till Easter, will impression retailer gross sales and we’re persevering with to actively handle our clothes and residential inventory and our retailer price base accordingly.”
M&S famous the 25.1% fall in clothes and residential income mirrored “an in-store gross sales decline of 46.5%, partly offset by sturdy on-line gross sales progress of 47.5%”. It stated: “The gross sales combine remained closely biased to Covid-influenced product corresponding to sleepwear and leisurewear.”
Flagging the power of meals gross sales, M&S declared: “In the course of the four-week lead as much as Christmas, clients responded to our modern seasonal product.”
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