Wolford optimistic but still no sign of a profit this year
Wolford is reaping the fruits of focusing on its core business. For its third quarter, the company was in fact able to return to growth, but not enough to return to black.
For the fiscal year ending April 30, Wolford management expects a loss of 5 million euros before interest and taxes. 3 million euros of that figure are related to non-recurring expenses. Meanwhile, sales for the Austrian upscale hosiery manufacturer increased by 2.2% to 48 million euros from November to May, good news for management since this is the company’s most important period of the year with the holiday season.
During the first nine months of the year, sales declined slightly by 0.6% to 123.4 million, but increased 1% at a constant exchange rate. Like many brands, Wolford's wholesale business has suffered, dropping 9%. However, independent retailers only account for 16% of business. Sales at Wolford stores, concessions in department stores and online each jumped 12%, 8% and 21% respectively.
In terms of regions, Wolford enjoyed strong performance in the United States and China. Even in Italy, increasing sales were buoyed by the opening of Wolford brand stores. The company did report slight declines in France (10% of Wolford's business), Germany (16% of the company's sales), the Netherlands and Scandinavia.
Wolford's earnings before interest and taxes plummeted from 45% to 1.74 million. Last December, Wolford announced that it is refocusing on its hosiery and undergarments lines, making swimwear the first victim of the company's decision.
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