Moss Bros says ride will get rougher for high-street retailers
Saturday 14 June 2008
Philip Mountford, the chief executive of the menswear retailer Moss Bros, has become the latest retail big hitter to forecast that trading conditions on the high street will deteriorate this year, as the menswear chain posted a fall in sales.
"Trading will get progressively more difficult," said Mr Mountford. "I don't think it will get easier for anyone on the high street."
In its interim management statement, Moss Bros posted like-for-like sales down 1.5 per cent for the 19 weeks to 7 June. Paul Deacon, a Landsbanki analyst, said: "There is little doubt that the company, like the rest of the industry, is in for a rough ride given the likely operating environment." Landsbanki forecasts a 4 per cent decline in like-for-like sales at Moss Bros this financial year.
Mr Mountford said he was "disappointed" that the Icelandic investment group Baugur, which has a 29 per cent stake in the menswear retailer, had walked away from its planned takeover. He said: "I still believe a business of this size should be in private hands." Baugur blamed changes to the share register – such as the fashion and furnishings retailer Laura Ashley building a near-10 per cent stake in Moss Bros this year – for abandoning its £40m indicative offer last month.
Mr Mountford said that Moss Bros would refocus on implementing its three-year strategic plan, which was largely put on hold in December when Baugur's takeover interest emerged. Asked about speculation that may leave the retailer, Mr Mountford said: "I am still employed by Moss Bros," and added that Moss Bros had not yet decided on its new chairman.
The non-executive director Rowland Gee was unavailable for comment concerning speculation that the Gee family, which owns a 5 per cent holding in Moss Bros, plan to sell their stake.
- 1 Marijuana use by teenagers does not result in a lower IQ or worse exam results, study finds
- 2 Watch what happened when food critics were unknowingly served McDonald's
- 3 Jimmy Carr's controversial Oscar Pistorius joke goes too far at the Q Awards
- 4 Australian café owner sparks debate after saying 'No' to having unruly children on premises
- 5 NHS staff banned from drinking tea or coffee on the job because it looks like they're not working hard enough
Renee Zellweger on plastic surgery: 'I'm living a more fulfilling life and I'm thrilled that perhaps it shows'
Kim Jong-un 'purge': Six North Korea officials missing for weeks 'may have been executed'
Diwali: What is the festival of lights – and how is it celebrated around the world?
Nathan Cirillo: Final pictures emerge of soldier moments before he was shot dead by Ottowa gunman
Jimmy Carr's controversial Oscar Pistorius joke goes too far at the Q Awards
Of course, teenage girls need role models – but not like beauty vlogger Zoella
Cameron is warned 'no possibility' of UK reducing immigration and that bid to bring in quota on migrant workers would be illegal
Support for EU membership 'at highest level since 1991' with most Brits wanting to stay 'in'
Thousands with degenerative conditions classified as 'fit to work in future' – despite no possibility of improvement
Residents should throw a street party and mix with immigrant neighbours, councils told
Russell Brand threatened with arrest after filming outside Fox News headquarters
iJobs Money & Business
£350 - £360 per day: Ashdown Group: SQL Developer with T-SQL, Watford, Hertfor...
120-150k: Accountancy Action: We are looking for an experienced CFO from a min...
£24000 - £28000 per annum + bonus & benefits: Ashdown Group: IT Business Syste...
£18000 - £23000 per annum + Commission: SThree: The SThree group is a world le...