Firm backs tax rise

Frasers’ £100m digital push as profits slide

House of Fraser Glasgow

The stores group has suffered through the pandemic (pic: Terry Murden)

Frasers Group, formerly Sports Direct, said it will invest £100 million in its digital strategy as profit before tax for the year to 26 April fell by almost 20% from £179.2m to £143.5m.

Underlying pre-tax profit decreased 18.1% from £143.3m to £117.4m.

The chain, which includes Jenner’s, Game Digital, Jack Wills and Evans Cycles, intends to invest in excess of £100m in its “digital elevation strategy”.

In its delayed results it said: “With a particular focus on Flannels and an enhanced customer experience, this investment will be integral in supporting the continued growth of our online channels.

“This commitment will support the Group’s wider ongoing elevation strategy. With digital transformation now at the forefront, the successful reopening of our stores after the Covid-19 lockdown and continuing strong web performance, we are confident in achieving between a 10% and 30% improvement in underlying EBITDA during FY21.”

The company said it supports a 1% increase to corporation tax on the proviso it goes directly to the NHS. “We call on the government to seriously explore this idea,” it said.

No dividend was paid during the year and the board has decided not to declare a final dividend in respect of this financial period.

Mothercare deal

Children’s clothing and accessories company Mothercare has formally appointed Boots as its UK and Republic of Ireland franchise partner for the next 10 years.

Mothercare branded clothing will be available in a large number of Boots stores across the UK and Ireland from this autumn with home and travel products (including pushchairs and car seats) available in larger Boots stores, as well as online. 

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