Stockmann revenue falls, but losses narrow
Stockmann, the Finnish retail group that also owns the Lindex chain, said its consolidated revenue fell 7.1% currency-neutral in the first three months of the year, dropping to €155.7 million.
But its gross margin rose to 56.3% from 54.2% and the operating loss was slightly smaller year-on-year at €27.7 million (it had been €27.8 million a year earlier). On an adjusted basis, the operating loss shrank even further to €21.1 million from €26.7 million.
CEO Jari Latvanen hailed the fact that the firm improved its performance, even despite the pandemic having a big effect during the hurter compared to a smaller effect a year ago. The firm was helped by “strong growth” in its e-commerce operations this time round.
Both the Stockmann and Lindex divisions showed buoyant digital growth through their own webstores. The Stockmann division's online sales “improved significantly” and the major Crazy Days sales campaign in March “slightly exceeded last year”.
Lindex also did well in collaboration with partners’ e-tail platforms. And its gross margin improved due to favourable currency effects, together with successful stock handling and better intake margins.
The company went through a restructuring process last year and this completed in early February this year. It means the firm is continuing with its department store operations and with Lindex but is selling and leasing back its department store properties in Helsinki, Tallinn and Riga.
Stockmann gave no guidance for the rest of the year due to ongoing uncertainty because of the pandemic. It said the coronavirus “is still causing significant changes in Stockmann Group’s operating environment and customer volumes”. And while e-tail has been strong, it hasn’t been able to make up for sales lost through physical stores.
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