Thursday 28 November 2019 8:03 am

Model railway brand Hornby narrows losses after putting brakes on discounting

Model railway brand Hornby narrowed its losses in the first half of the year as the company ramped up full-price sales and put the brakes on discounting. 

The figures 

The company reported a loss after tax of £2.71m in the six months to 30 September, from a £3.23m loss the previous year. 

Read more: Hornby regrets not producing Brexit themed model train

Group revenue increased 15 per cent to £15.9m from £13.8m in the first half of 2018. 

Hornby’s net debt widened from £1.8m last year to £8.4m this year due to spending on stock ahead of the Christmas trading period.

Why it’s interesting

Hornby said that “pulling the handbrake” on discounting had been “much more painful” than expected, but said the company was through the hardest part of its turnaround plan, with trust returning and customers re-engaging. 

“The thinking now is about tuning the engine and ideally adding a couple of superchargers,” Hornby said. 

The retailer outlined plans to boost its online offering by investing in its website and social media presence, saying its current digital platform has “a lot of dusty old faded boxes in the window”. 

“Whilst the internet has caused our physical retailers some problems, we think it will become an important way for us to reach our customers and get them excited about our product pipeline,” the company said.

“We want to engage more with our existing customers and recruit new ones.”

Read more: Horby expects revenue fall despite turnaround plan

What Hornby said

Chief executive Lyndon Davies said: “Revenue is growing, losses are narrowing and we are shifting gears in our journey back to profitability and beyond”.

Main image credit: Getty