Fragrance shop

The Fragrance Shop shows strong performance during the Covid pandemic

The Fragrance Shop said the form of the business had “changed dramatically” over the past 12 months, accelerating its transformation into a “phygital” retailer.
// The Fragrance Shop sales fall 4.7% year-on-year to March 31
// Online sales growth of 164% helps offset lockdown impact
// In-store sales for the year down 47%

The Fragrance Shop posted robust trading for its fiscal year through March 31, although it was forced to close its stores for most of that time.

The retailer said “significant growth” in online sales more than offset an expected decline in in-store sales due to the series of forced lockdowns amid the Covid-19 pandemic.

The Fragrance Shop added that the form of the business has “dramatically changed” over the past 12 months, accelerating its transformation into a “phygital” retailer, with a high-growth e-commerce arm complementing its physical store network.

This transformation has seen the fragrance retailer focus on online operations – including repurposing stores during lockdown to offer a ‘click and fill’ service to limit the need to furlough staff and to better manage levels in stock overall. Business.

The move helped The Fragrance Shop’s online sales skyrocket 164% during the fiscal year.

The Fragrance Shop also said the proportion of sales from its online channels nearly tripled, from 20% of the overall total to 56%.

However, overall sales fell 4.7% as the retailer faced a sharp drop in footfall in city centers and malls and the impact of three closures.

As a result, in-store sales fell 47% over the full year.

Despite the closures, The Fragrance Shop still opened a new boutique, expanding its estate to 199 stores, and now plans to open six more this fiscal year.

The retailer said overall gross retail sales for the year were £128m, while EBITDA was £15.4m.

Unlike broader retail trends, The Fragrance Shop said it still expects a thriving store network to be an important part of its post-pandemic future, citing the sensory experience that comes with the purchase of perfumes.

However, he also warned that footfall in city centers would remain subdued “for some time” and the retailer would adapt to deal with the new environment.

The Fragrance Shop is working closely with landlords to agree terms that allow stores to remain economical and part of a high street recovery.

It has successfully renegotiated leases on a rotational model, with about half of its landlords aligning property costs with future footfall expectations.

“Unprecedented times have presented us with enormous challenges, but I couldn’t be more proud of how everyone in the business has pulled together to get us through this difficult time,” the chief executive said. by The Fragrance Shop, Sanjay Vadera.

“A combination of self-help and government support, for which we are grateful, has guided us through turbulent times and left us well placed to rebuild, as the economy recovers.

“The work we had already done on strengthening our online platform provided the foundation on which we were able to develop our digital offering to respond to the radical change in customer buying habits.

“This shift to online shopping is only going to get stronger and we see a big opportunity in it.

“We are under no illusions that the coming months will bring further challenges, we are already welcoming customers back to our doors and playing our part in bringing the high street back.”

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