M&S bucks retail trend with profits rise
By Sarah Wood | 24th May 2023
Food and clothing sales at Marks & Spencer beat expectations last year, despite soaring inflation.
The retailer, which has stores in Gloucester and Cheltenham, has also reported a "good start" to its new financial year, with sales rising in both clothing and food, as reported by Retail Gazette.
For the year to April 1, profit before tax and adjusting items hit £482m, down slightly on the previous year, but when almost £60m of business rates relief was taken out of last year's figures, profits were up 4%.
Pre-tax profit increased 23% on a statutory basis and group sales were up 9.9% to £11.98bn.
Clothing and home sales increased by 11.5% to £3.72bn, which M&S attributed to a focus on "the modern mainstream customer" and "more confident approach to buying".
Food sales were up 8.7% to £7.22bn, but the investment in value meant profits were slightly down in the division.
The joint venture with Ocado notched up a £29.5m loss for the business, with a "reset" now underway at Ocado.
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