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Ladies retailer Bonmarche sees profits nose-dive by 48% as Christmas approaches

Bonmarche. Front of shop on the Market Place in Great Yarmouth town centre. Picture: James Bass

Bonmarche. Front of shop on the Market Place in Great Yarmouth town centre. Picture: James Bass

Archant Norfolk © 2014

Profits at ladies clothing retailer Bonmarche have tanked by nearly a half in the first six months of 2018.

The store, which has four outlets across Norfolk including one on Norwich’s St Stephen’s Street, saw pre-tax profits fall 45% to £2.3m.

It also has shops in Great Yarmouth, Dereham, and King’s Lynn, as well in Lowestoft, Ipswich and Bury St Edmunds.

Despite this, revenue nudged up to £97.9m from £97.8m.

Online sales were up 28.9% but store like-for-like sales fell 4% amid what chief executive Helen Connolly said was “general weaker consumer sentiment and footfall seen across the market”.

She added: “Providing that sales during the key Black Friday through to Christmas trading period meet expectations, the board maintains the guidance published in September, being that the underlying profit before tax for the group for full-year 2019 will be £5.5m.”

In September, Bonmarche warned over profits, blaming weak consumer demand and hot summer weather for a decline in sales.

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