Weak demand for its luxury goods in the US and Hong Kong highlighted the challenges facing incoming Burberry boss, Marco Gobbetti, as annual profit fell 5 per cent.
A mixed-bag performance included “exceptional” trading in the UK, where a falling pound encouraged more bargain-hunting by tourists.
Christopher Bailey, who will be succeeded by Gobbetti as chief executive in July but remain as chief creative officer, said it would step up cost saving from £20million last year to £50million.
He added: “2017 was a year of transition for Burberry in a fast-changing luxury market. The actions we have taken to lay the foundations for future growth are yielding early benefits and I remain confident that these will build over time.”
Burberry, whose female fragrance My Burberry Black is promoted by actress Lily James, pictured, posted a pre-tax profit of £394.8million on revenue of £2.76billion, down 2 per cent when adjusted for currency fluctuations.
Asda’s underlying sales have fallen for the 11th straight quarter.
The UK’s third biggest supermarket, owned by US giant Walmart, said takings at stores open at least a year were down 2.8 per cent in the first three months of 2017, a slight improvement on the previous quarter’s 2.9 per cent fall.
CEO Sean Clarke said there was “still much to do” despite a third consecutive quarterly improvement.
Phil Dorrell, partner at Retail Remedy, said: “Chasing costs for too long means the quality has become diluted. Discounters stole Asda’s ball and now they need to invent a new game.”
Shares in Berendsen soared 182½p to 1046p as the FTSE 250 workwear and laundry services group rejected a £2billion takeover approach by French textiles and hygiene services firm Elis.
Elis made its revised proposal, having had an earlier cash and shares proposal rejected.
It claimed a successful track record with previous acquisitions and argued that combining the two businesses to create a pan-European leader would deliver “significant” benefits to Berendsen shareholders through various cost savings and boost earnings.
But Berendsen said the “unsolicited and conditional proposal very significantly undervalues” the business and its prospects.
It does not see the basis for any further discussions with Elis.
Mothercare is set to close dozens of stores and stop selling clothing for older children after its UK business returned to profit in the second half for the first time in six years.
The retailer will reduce its 152 UK outlets to between 80 and 100 over the next five years to reflect the growth in online shopping, which now represents 41 per cent of its domestic market turnover.
It posted an annual underlying UK loss of £4.4million, a 31 per cent improvement on the previous year, on flat sales of £459.4million.
Mothercare chief executive Mark Newton-Jones said: “We are clear on the role our stores will play for the future, by offering specialist advice and service and first-class product presentation.”
Source : EXPRESS