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Brown (N.) Group PLC (BWNG)

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Tuesday 01 July, 2008

Brown (N.) Group PLC

Interim Management and AGM Tr

RNS Number : 9119X
Brown (N.) Group PLC
01 July 2008
 



Tuesday 1 July 


N Brown Group



INTERIM MANAGEMENT AND AGM TRADING STATEMENT



At the Annual General Meeting being held today at 12.30pm Lord Alliance, Chairman, will make the following statement on current trading.


In the 17 weeks ended 28 June 2008 group turnover from continuing operations increased by 12.3%, up slightly from the rate of growth we announced with our preliminary results on 29 April 2008. Sales were particularly strong during the sunny spell in May which coincided with the mailing of our summer catalogues.


The growth in sales continues to be broadly based across our various customer and product groups. We have invested further in the new brands launched during 2007, Simply Yours, Marisota, Jacamo and Nightingales, and in aggregate they accounted for 4% of the total sales growth. Menswear has been the fastest growing product category although ladieswear sales have also been very encouraging, with customers particularly attracted by the new branded and celebrity designer ranges. Home and leisure sales have been strong which has helped increase the average value of all items purchased by 5%.


Online sales continue to flourish and now account for 31% of total sales, increasing by 45% in value. The mix of customers, products and channels has resulted in a reduction of 0.6% in the rate of gross margin, but this mix has also driven operational efficiencies which have largely offset the gross margin reduction.  The bad debt charge is included in the gross margin and is currently within management's expectations.


The group's financial position remains strong although the board is acutely aware of the economic factors which could impact on customers' discretionary spending. However we continue to believe that the age and demographics of our customer base, coupled with the strength of our specialist product propositions and the enhancements to our websites, will deliver further progress in the remainder of the financial year.


ENQUIRIES:


N Brown Group plc


Alan White, Chief Executive

Dean Moore, Finance Director

Tel: 0161 238 2202

Tel: 0161 238 2208

Website: www.nbrown.co.uk

  



Gavin Anderson & Company


Fergus Wylie

Tel: 020 7554 1400

Clotilde Gros 





This information is provided by RNS
The company news service from the London Stock Exchange
 
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