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N Brown reports drop in full-year revenue and profit

By Huw Hughes

20 May 2021

British fashion group N Brown has reported a drop in revenue and profit as store closures throughout the year took their toll on the business.

Revenue at the multi-brand group dropped 13 percent to 728.8 million pounds in the 12 months to February 27 2021, while product revenue dropped 14.4 percent to 468.4 million pounds.

Meanwhile, adjusted profit before tax almost halved from 59.5 million pounds to 30.1 million pounds.

Adjusted EBITDA fell 18.9 percent to 86.5 million pounds, which was above the top end of the range of guidance, while adjusted EBITDA margin dropped to 11.9 percent from 12.7 percent a year earlier.

Strategic brands return to growth

Despite a year of “multiple challenges”, CEO Steve Johnson said the company was “beginning to see some early signs of progress”, citing a 1.3 percent increase in Q4 revenue from the group’s five strategic brands Jacamo, Simply Be, JD Williams, Ambrose Wilson and Home Essential.

Johnson also cited N Brown’s recent completion of a 100 million pound equity raise which will be used to strengthen its balance sheet and invest further in its digital platform and brand websites.

Johnson said: “Whilst wider consumer dynamics remain uncertain as we emerge from lockdown, we have significantly transformed the shape of the business from where it was at the start of the pandemic and I would like to thank every single one of our colleagues for helping us make those changes at pace, whilst delivering a very high standard of service to our customers through very difficult times.”

N Brown said it now expects a return to product revenue growth in FY22, with total revenue forecast to grow between 1 percent and 4 percent for the year. It expects adjusted EBITDA to be in the range of 93 million pounds to 100 million pounds.