Fashion retailer French Connection is on the right path

French Connection founder Stephen Marks said the fashion chain was on the “right path” after it narrowed annual losses and stemmed a sales decline

French Connection, George Street, Edinburgh
French Connection, George Street, Edinburgh

French Connection founder Stephen Marks said the fashion chain was on the “right path” after it narrowed annual losses and stemmed a sales decline.

Mr Marks said it had been buoyed by the impact of a new design team, while its online business has grown and underperforming stores closed.

The group swung to a profit of £1.7m for the second half, leaving underlying losses for the 12 months to January 31 at £4.4m.

Mr Marks said it was an “encouraging improvement” from the £7.2m losses recorded the year before. Like-for-like sales in the second half in the UK and Europe were up 1.4%, after a 4.5% decline in the first six-month period.

It meant there was an overall decline of 1.4%, a sharp improvement on the 7% drop in the previous year.

Mr Marks, who is chief executive and chairman, said: “I am pleased that the initiatives we put in place to drive a turnaround in our trading performance have delivered better than anticipated results and that they continue to gain traction.

“We have accomplished a lot in the past year and will build on that momentum.”

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