N Brown profit falls to £58m on £901m revenue

Manchester-based specialist fit fashion retailer N Brown Group — whose brands include JD Williams, Simply Be and Jacamo — said its group revenue rose 4% to £900.7 million in the 53 weeks to March 4, but statutory profit before tax fell 20.2% to £57.6 million.

N Brown Group CEO Angela Spindler said revenues from JD Williams, Simply Be and Jacamo were up 9.2% and a good performance of N Brown’s financial services business was driven by the “increasing quality” of its customer loan book.

Spindler said: “I am pleased with the progress made this year, as we continue to build on our position as an agile, online fashion retailer …

“Our performance accelerated in the second half as we demonstrated our enhanced ability to flex our product offering in-season.  

“A particular highlight was Ladieswear which delivered the best performance for almost a decade as we gained significant market share.

“Our customer satisfaction rating is also now the second highest in the sector and our online metrics remain strong, with over 75% of new customers coming to us online. 

“Revenues from our Power Brands, JD Williams, Simply Be and Jacamo, were up 9.2%, and we successfully turned around the performance of our Traditional segment in the second half.

“We are also very pleased with the performance of Financial Services, driven by the increasing quality of our customer loan book. 

“The macro-economic backdrop remains challenging for retail. Against this backdrop we remain vigilant over our core costs and efficiencies …

“Although it is early in our new financial year, performance so far has been encouraging and in line with our expectations.”