M&S Records First Ever LOSS in 94 Years

M&S Records First Ever LOSS in 94 Years.

M&S has recorded a first-ever LOSS over its 94-year history with a €97.4m (£87m) slump into the red after the impact of Covid hammered trading of the retailer that even managed to turn a profit during World War Two.

High street giant Marks & Spencer has fallen to a loss for the first time in its 94 year history after its stores were forced to close during the pandemic. The company fell to a €97.4m (£87.6m) pre-tax loss for the 26 weeks to September 26 in a reverse of its financial success in the corresponding period of 2019.

It told shareholders it performed ‘better than expected’ during the first half, with revenue falling less than initially predicted. It said revenue for the period slid by 15.8% to £4.09 billion after it was hit by lower clothing and home sales. The clothing and home division saw sales dive 40.8% over the half-year, with a 21.3% decline in the second quarter as it benefited from the reopening of stores and strong online sales growth.

M&S said trading in October “has continued at similar rates” to the second quarter, with clothing and home sales down 21.5 per cent but food sales up three per cent.

Its grocery business performed “strongly” over the half-year, with like-for-like sales rising by 2.7 per cent thanks to substantial growth from its Simply Food stores. Meanwhile, the retail giant hailed strong growth in its Ocado Retail joint venture, which started delivering M&S food at the start of September.

It said the partnership has reported a 47.9 per cent jump in sales, while profitability has also improved. The update came as M&S continues to push forward with its Never The Same Again transformation programme.

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Written by

Tony Winterburn

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