Debenhams has reported a dramatic drop in pre tax profit of 85% for the six month period to 3 March 2018 to £13.5m. The retailer has blamed a mixture of a change in shopping habits of its customers and the extreme weather brough about by the ‘beast from the east’, which forced Debenhams to close almost 100 stores.
However, chief executive Sergio Bucher has stated that although the market was very volatile the business has to take responsibility for the poor performance.
Chief executive Sergio Bucher said:“Our product hasn’t been exciting enough. We were too much on the back foot with our product. We need to be more dynamic. We will be exiting some brands, shrinking others and bringing in others. We need fewer products. We need the design to be sharper and we need to own the brands that we have.”
“It has not been an easy first half and the extreme weather in the final week of the half had a material impact on our results.
“But I am hugely encouraged by the progress we are making to transform Debenhams for our customers.”
Debenhams was established in 1778 and operates 240 stores across 27 countries.