Mixed performance for womenswear chain Bonmarche during pre-Christmas trading period

A Bonmarché store.

A Bonmarché store. - Credit: Archant

Sales at womenswear retailer Bonmarché edged higher during its third quarter as the retailer opted for fewer discounts over the key festive trading period.

Bonmarché said like-for-like store sales rose by 0.8% in the 13 weeks to December 24 after it took a “less promotional stance”. Total sales over the period grew by 3.3%.

The group added that like-for-like store sales dropped 3.4% in the five weeks to Christmas Eve, while online revenue dropped by 14.3%.

But chief executive Helen Connolly said the firm remained on track to meet profit expectations for the full year of between £5m and £7m.

She added: “Given the backdrop of the current trading environment, our third quarter store sales were satisfactory, particularly in light of the business still being in the early stages of its turnaround. The online performance was poor, and this continues to be a key area of focus.

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“The product gross margin for the quarter was 2.2% higher than for the corresponding period...due to a lower level of promotional activity than in the previous year.”

Ms Connolly, who took up the role last year, added there remains a “degree of uncertainty” regarding trading conditions on the high street.

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