Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 11°C

min temp: 5°C

ESTD 1874 Search

Retail: Debenhams to ‘refocus’ its promotional strategy after 24% fall in first-half profits

09:07 15 April 2014

Debenhams is in discussions to introduce a number of "well-known" brands into its shops as it aims to bounce back from poor trading in the key Christmas period.

Debenhams is in discussions to introduce a number of "well-known" brands into its shops as it aims to bounce back from poor trading in the key Christmas period.

Debenhams today pledged to refocus its promotional strategy after a disastrous Christmas trading performance led to a sharp fall in half-year profits.

shares

The department store chain, which has 158 outlets in the UK, will also look to speed up delivery times in its online operation and said it is in discussions to introduce a number of “well-known” brands into its shops.

The moves, outlined by chief executive Michael Sharp, follow a “challenging” period in which profits fell 24.5% to £85.2million in the 26 weeks to March 1.

Debenhams alerted the City to a slide in profits on New Year’s Eve after weak trading in September and October and poor sales in clothing was compounded by a difficult festive period as rivals engaged in a price war.

The company said today: “Promotions are a traditional strength of Debenhams but in the run-up to Christmas their impact was diluted by the highly promotional trading environment in the UK.

“We are therefore refocusing our promotional strategy which will see more clearly defined promotional periods in the trading calendar with fewer days on promotion.”

Debenhams said it also trailed behind its rivals in terms of convenience because it lacked a competitive range of premium delivery options.

It has pledged to improve in this area in time for Christmas, with next-day click and collect and a 10pm cut-off for next-day delivery. This has required a step-up in spending on automation in its distribution centres.

The company said analysis of all of its shops found that 10% of its UK store space was currently under-performing.

It said: “We continue to work on a number of routes to improve sales densities. These include adding more choice of products, brands and services.

“We are currently in discussions with a number of well-known brands, some of which are expected to be trialled over the next six months.”

shares

1 comment

  • Like all big retailers they have got into the trap of giving big discounts at times though out the year so people wait till then to buy, prices are high before the so called event ,sale,or weekend specials,then go to what you would expect to pay for item, Sainsburys is the same on clothes every bank holiday 20% off ,so if I want a shirt or something else I wait till then.

    Report this comment

    pandy

    Tuesday, April 15, 2014

The views expressed in the above comments do not necessarily reflect the views of this site

Alex Till of Menta.

Enterprise agency Menta has launched a new Digital Enterprise Engagement Programme (DEEP), offering newly formed local businesses and those who are self-employed access to free digital training courses.

Solar farm. Library image.

A proposed solar park in Wix has been tipped for approval by council planning officers.

The headquarters of Realise Futures in Ipswich.

Ipswich-based social enterprise Realise Futures has won a contract to provide supported employment services for adults with disabilities across a wide area of Essex.

Stage 5 of the Womens Tour passes through Onehouse on their way to Bury St Edmunds last year

Schoolchildren will also be involved in an evening of activities in Bury St Edmunds ahead of the start of a major women’s cycling event.

Cloud telecoms company X-on has launched Cuube, a new online communications services platform.

Cloud telecoms company X-on, based at the Framlingham Technology Centre, has launched Cuube, a new online communications services platform.

Paul Rous, of Bruisyard Hall, has launched a tech startup venture with Mark Pearson

A Suffolk entrepreneur has teamed up with a top technology investor, who made millions from a website he created with just £300, to help finance new ideas.

Jeremy Goulding, front, left, chief executive of Wheatley, is congratulated by Innovatioin Martlesham chair Ian Buxton on winning the first Innovationi Martlesham competition. Also pictured, from left, are Paul O'Brien of BT, Jane Bromley of Wheatley, Mike Ward of Wheatley and Mohamed Abdel-Maguid from University Campus Suffolk.

Software company Wheatley has been named winner of a new competition staged by Innovation Martlesham, the cluster of hi-tech companies based at BT’s Adastral Park research site, near Ipswich.

Total unemployment in the UK has reached a near seven year low, official figures showed today.
Photo: Philip Toscano/PA Wire

Unemployment in the UK has continued to fall and a record 31million people are in now work, according to the final labour market figures before the General Election.

The Nestle Purina plant in Sudbury.

KitKat, Nescafe and Shredded Wheat maker Nestlé said today that first quarter sales had been boosted by an earlier Easter, but with growth dented by currency changes after the Swiss central bank’s shock decision to lift a cap on the franc.

Most read

Most commented

Topic pages