1m pounds costs hit French Connection

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The Independent Online
French Connection, the troubled fashion manufacturer and retailer, was hit by another pounds 1m of closure costs and write-offs in the six months to 31 July, writes Patrick Hosking.

However, at the trading level it recovered strongly, reporting operating profits of pounds 903,000 after a pounds 1.4m loss last time.

Closing Western Jeans and Future Classics and reorganising French and UK operations cost an exceptional pounds 777,000.

The group has also made a pounds 233,000 extraordinary provision against the sale of Bukta Connection, its disastrous sportswear arm. The company lost pounds 5m on Bukta last year in write-offs, theft and trading losses. Now it does not expect to receive much of the pounds 364,000 for which it finally sold Bukta in June. Bukta has since been placed in receivership.

Sales shrank from pounds 25.3m to pounds 22.5m. Pre-tax losses were reduced from pounds 5m to pounds 535,000. There is no interim dividend and the company warned that there will be no final dividend.

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