Supergroup back on form as profits rise

A CONFIDENT Supergroup said yesterday that its annual profits had grown by 22 per cent, as it unveiled plans to up international expansion and launch a bigger range of jeans.

The company, which competes with brands such as Abercrombie & Fitch and Jack Wills in casual clothing like hooded sweatshirts, posted adjusted pre-tax profit of £52.2m for the year to 28 April, just beating average market expectations.

Chief executive Julian Dunkerton said he was pleased by the performance of its 2013 ranges and the early reaction to its 2014 products and remained confident in the prospects for the group.

He said the group had made progress in womenswear, including dresses and tailored clothes, and the next big focus would be the jeans market for both men and women.

“We feel and we know we could be better in denim,” he said.

“The next 12 months is an absolute push in becoming a world-class denim brand as well.”

As previously flagged, revenue for the year rose 14.9 per cent to £360.4m, with like-for-like retail growth – at stores open at least a year – of 5.7 per cent.

The group, which has 113 standalone stores in Europe, plans to open 80,000 to 100,000 square feet of new space this year.

Dunkerton said that around 30 per cent of the new space would be outside Britain and Ireland – including new stores in Hamburg, Barcelona and a flagship format outlet in Munich.