Reiss bounces back from pandemic, to launch kidswear and Castore collab
Premium fashion retailer Reiss had plenty of good news on Thursday. It announced a move into kidswear for the first time in 50 years, a link-up with Castore, and said that it's recovered strongly from the pandemic impact that hit it hard last year.
That impact was significant given that the company also said it made a loss before tax and exceptional items of £3.8 million in 2020.
The kidswear line will launch next month but no other details were available. Nor was there much on the Castore deal, other than that it’s launching a collaboration. But it all bodes well for future sales.
Importantly too, it said that since the start of the current financial year "there has been a very strong recovery in our sales and we expect the group to return to profit this year".
For the 30 weeks up to August 29, total group sales were 52% higher than in the same period in 2020 at £124.2 million. And even more encouraging, they were 8% higher than in the pre-pandemic comparable period. Given that the 30 weeks in 2021 included 10 weeks when all of it shops were closed due to the lockdown, that 2019 comparison is pretty impressive.
It also said that in the 52 weeks up to January 30 this year, the company saw total sales of £170.7 million, which was down 24.6% compared to the previous year. As mentioned it made that £3.8 million loss, and this came after it had made a profit on the same basis of £20.1 million in the year before.
Those exceptional items it mentioned added up to nearly £10 million, mainly due to the pandemic. But it ended the year with a healthy cash balance of £14.2 million, which was down only £4.2 million from the end of the previous year. That was helped by the financial support it received from its landlords and the UK government during the period.
CEO Christos Angelides said: “Reiss has recovered strongly from a challenging 2020 and the creation of our new casual collections has proved successful with our customers. As the impact of the pandemic recedes and the economy recovers, we are also seeing a strong return in sales of occasion and formalwear – our speciality since 1971.”
He added that the business is “working closely with Next plc to integrate our logistics and website onto the Next Total Platform, set to go live in early 2022. I am confident that this partnership will lead to further sales growth, in addition to cost synergies and operational efficiencies.”
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