M&S international sales up 5.1% vs same period in 2019/20

The VAT hike has negatively affected sales in M&S

Food sales rose 12% as Omicron's high transmissibility rate encouraged shoppers to celebrate at home



18 January 2022 | 0

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After already upgrading its outlook twice, M&S has raised its earnings guidelines slightly following record food sales over Christmas.

The retailer expects profit to at least reach its previous guidance of about £500 million (€598m) this fiscal year.

While its clothing and home division has proved a long-time problem for the group, M&S said this also performed well with a second successive quarter of growth.

International sales (including its Irish business) totaled £272 million (€325m) – an increase of 5.1% on the same period of 2019/20, with online sales more than doubling.

According to M&S, its performance “was driven by clothing and home growth in the Republic and key markets such as India after Covid-related restrictions were eased”.

“In addition, we generated strong growth through online marketplaces and in franchise shipments to the Middle East,” M&S said.

The Irish Times reports that although M&S “has been struggling for years with a business dogged by too many expensive shops and a clothing division often dismissed as old-fashioned”, the “turnaround finally seems to be making headway”.

Full-price apparel sales increased by 45%, with continued strong online sales in that division.

Food sales rose 12% with the high transmissibility of Omicron encouraging shoppers to celebrate at home rather than venturing out to restaurants.

Shares in Marks and Spencer have gained nearly 90% in the past 12 months.



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