Bullish outlook for SuperGroup as orders rise, Q1 strong despite comp sales trip-up

UK-based causal fashion retailer SuperGroup Thursday reported a strong start to the new fiscal year and predicted more improvements to come on more stores and autumn/winter orders up 10%. However, its comps performance for Q1 suffered on shortages of key spring/summer lines and tough year-ago comparisons. For the Q1 to end-July, revenues rose 15.9% to £87m, boosted by new stores openings in Europe, Southeast Asia and Taiwan.

In line with the growth strategy, new store openings were predominantly in mainland Europe and added a net 13,000 sq ft to the portfolio, including a large-format store in Marseille and a smaller one in Kitzbuhel, Austria, which complements the forthcoming launch of the Superdry skiwear range, it noted.

“The new store pipeline remains strong, especially in Germany where six stores, including the German flagship in Munich, are due to open before the close of the calendar year,” it said.

Retail revenues grew 13.6% to £60.44m, although same-store sales declined 3.7%, as anticipated, the group said, due mainly to those shortages of key seasonal lines. Year-ago comps rose 8.5%.

Wholesale sales for period increased 21.6% to £26.6m.

The company said its order book for autumn/winter 2014/15 was 10% up on a year ago, boosted mainly by international placements.

“With our strong pipeline of new stores, particularly in mainland Europe, the continued evolution of the ranges and our improved infrastructure we remain confident that we have the platform to deliver profitable growth in the current year,” said CEO Julian Dunkerton.

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