Analyst Views: What was your reaction to Debenhams’ half-year performance?

 
Kasmira Jefford
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DAVID JEARY | CANACCORD GENUITY
We remain concerned about Debenhams’ trading prospects for a number of reasons. It remains too early in our view to judge whether Debenhams has been successful in weaning itself and its customers from its traditionally highly promotional high-low pricing strategy.

CAROLINE GULLIVER | JEFFERIES
Debenhams’ first half results have beaten profit estimates by four per cent, helped by the bringing forward of the “New Season Spectacular” into the first half. Management’s strategy to reduce promotions, invest in price and increase multi-channel sales is on track.

KATE CALVERT | INVESTEC
While management is pleased with its progress towards its strategic priorities, we believe these results confirm our view that any gross margin benefit from lower markdowns will need to be reinvested into the offer. With little profit progression expected over the medium term, we reiterate “sell”.

Update: This article has been changed to clarify that David Jeary is an analyst at Canaccord Genuity

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