New Look's directors skip bonuses as sales fall

Helen Cahill
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New Look wants to curb the number of sales it offers to customers (Source: New Look website)

New Look directors waived their bonuses for the year as the firm suffered a drop in sales and prepared itself for a "challenging" year ahead.

The figures

Total revenue at the group fell 2.4 per cent, down from £1.49bn to £1.45bn. Like-for-like sales in the UK fell 6.8 per cent.

Underlying profit plummeted from £174.7m to £97.6m for the year ending 25 March, a drop of 44.1 per cent.

Read more: Retail sales slide as consumers cut discretionary spending

New Look expanded its offering in China, opening 25 stores in the year. The retailer now has 110 outlets in China.

Why it's interesting

New Look said today that is does not see the retail business getting easier in the coming months. With wages coming under pressure due to inflation, and more people choosing to spend their money on eating out, the UK consumer is spending less on clothing.

Read more: New Look suffers "disappointing" sales drop during Christmas period

Meanwhile, fashion shoppers are becoming more demanding. The rise of "Instagram influencers" means young people want to shop immediately for the clothes and styles they see their favourite celebrities wearing.

To be able to produce clothes quickly, New Look has considered moving more of its production to the UK. However, it has run into difficulties, finding that working conditions in UK warehouses are so poor that it has been unable to find suitable partners on its home turf.

What New Look said

Anders Kristiansen, chief executive of New Look, said: "The retail environment is now more competitive than ever.

"Our industry continues to evolve; immediacy and convenience matter more than ever before in the search for great fashion.

"We expect trading conditions for the coming year to remain challenging. We remain absolutely committed to delivery on our strategy for the benefit of all our customers and stakeholders and are confident we have the right strategy in place to do so."

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