N Brown Returns to Profit after Digital Transformation

N Brown returns to profit after digital transformation

Shares in N Brown jumped 7.8% after the plus-size retailer reported it returned to profit in the first half.

• The retailer reported a statutory profit of £18.8m, up 169.4% from a loss of £27.1m last year.

• Earnings increased 4% from £52m to £54.1m in the 26 weeks to 31 August.

• However, group revenue fell 5.4% to £432.9m and net debt was up 14.5% to £481.6m.

• The company announced an interim dividend of 2.83p, flat on last year.

N Brown, which owns Simply Be and Jacamo, has implemented a turnaround plan, focusing on growing its digital presence, applying data to its marketing strategy and focusing on its core UK business.

• 84% of its product revenue is now digital as it pursues a transformation of the business.

• Operating expenses declined 9.5% due to a more targeted approach to marketing and the closure of physical stores.

Steve Johnson, chief executive, said: “We announced our new strategy in May to return N Brown to sustainable profit growth and we have made good progress over the first half of the year.

“In particular, we have delivered on our strategy of growing digital revenue across Simply Be, JD Williams, Jacamo and Ambrose Wilson.