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H&M group profits hit after "challenging" year

Tom Bottomley
31 January 2019

H&M group, which owns the H&M, Cos, & Other Stories and Weekday brands, has today announced a 5% increase in net sales for the year to 30 November 2018, but profits after financial items have dropped by 28% to SEK 15.64bn (£1.32bn).

Commenting on the results, H&M group CEO, Karl-Johan Persson, said: “It has been a challenging year for H&M group and the industry but after a difficult first half, there are signs the company’s transformation efforts are beginning to take effect.

“Improved collections generated better full-price sales and lower markdowns towards the end of the year. This gave us confidence to accelerate our transformation plans in the fourth quarter with a particular focus on the upgrade of our logistics systems. Inevitably resulting in increased costs but will lead to a range of improvements for customers.”

The ongoing transition work contributed to gradually improved sales development and increased market share in most markets during the second half of the year as the group acted to “future proof” its business. The group’s online sales continued to develop very well, with online sales amounting to approximately SEK 30bn (£2.53bn), an increase of 22%.

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