Mothercare

Ticker MTC

Today's data summary

Market closed
% change
-0.24%
Price Pence
20.45
Change
-0.05
As of 14:37 20 Apr 2019
Market cap. Pound sterling
69.89 million
As of 14:37 20 Apr 2019

Latest updates

Mothercare in line

mothercare store
PA

Sales at Mothercare fell 8.8% in the fourth quarter - that's on a like-for-like basis (stripping out changes to store numbers) and is an improvement on the previous two quarters.

Sales in its international operations were also down, by 4.9% on a constant currency basis.

But, the numbers means that its full-year performance remains unchanged and in line with previous guidance.

Mark Newton-Jones, chief executive of Mothercare, said: "The UK store closure programme has been completed ahead of schedule and we now have 80 stores in operation, down from 137 stores a year ago.

Whilst this has been a difficult but necessary process, to right-size the UK, it has meant that we have had to say goodbye to many loyal and longstanding colleagues. Their approach and professionalism have been outstanding right until the last day of operation for which we thank them sincerely".

Mothercare sells Early Learning Centre

Mothercare worker
Newscast

Struggling mother and baby goods retailer Mothercare has announced it is selling its Early Learning Centre business to the company behind toy retailer The Entertainer.

The sale will raise £13.5m, which Mothercare said would be used to reduce the company's debt.

Mothercare said that while it had "a solid presence in the toy market through the ELC brand, the Group does not have the necessary capital, resources or scale in this category to continue to invest and develop the own‑brand ELC toys needed to maximise returns from this specialist brand".

In addition, Mothercare said its UK store closure programme, which will result in a total estate of 80 stores by the end of March 2019, is ahead of the original schedule. In May 2018, it had 137 stores.

It also said it was on track to deliver cost savings of at least £19m a year.

Mothercare sales plunge

Mothercare store
AFP

It's another gloomy update for Mothercare, which has seen like-for-like sales fall by 11.4% for the 13 weeks to 5 January.

Online sales dropped 16.3% because of weaker traffic to the retailer's website as well as less discounting on toys and fewer people using iPads in store to order products, due to Mothercare's ongoing store closure programme.

General discounting also hit profits, but Mothercare said this was in line with its plans to clear stock, which was reduced by 23% more during the end-of-season sale, than in the previous year.

Mothercare's chief executive Mark Newton-Jones, said: "Looking ahead, our international business continues to show signs of recovery, although we expect market conditions in the UK to remain challenging with further disruption until April from our store closure programme.

"However, given the pace of our strategic transformation plan, our full year profit guidance is unchanged."

Mothercare shares plunge

Mothercare
AFP

Shares in Mothercare tumbled 12.59% in early trading after the struggling retailer announced that it would shut 60 stores, instead of the 50 sites it initially earmarked for closure.

Its stock fell to 25p.

We need stability over Brexit, says Mothercare

Mothercare
BBC

Mothercare is a major exporter - it has 1,100 shops across 50 countries so what does chief executive Mark Newton-Jones think about Brexit Secretary David Davis' resignation?

He says: "We all need stability, to plan you need stability. At the moment we don't seem to have that, particularly after last night's announcement, it is more uncertainty and I don't think it matters whether you're in government or in business, you need clarity and that can give you a clear direction.

"At the moment, clearly we're drifting a little so the sooner we have affirmation of what the future looks like, the better."

Mothercare faces 'brutal' retail landscape

Today Programme

BBC Radio 4

Mothercare
AFP

Mothercare's chief executive Mark Newton-Jones admits that the retailer has had a troubled decade.

He tells BBC Rado 4's Today programme: "In terms of reinventing and transforming the business, the UK had lacked investment so for the best part of a decade the business hadn't even had a lick of paint in the UK so it was really left behind and hadn't modernised as a retailer."

He says: "What we set out to do three and a half, four years ago is to invest and to modernise.

"The shareholders supported us then, they're supporting us again now and we'll really be able to speed up the transformation and by God, we do need to speed up the transformation because the UK retail landscape is pretty brutal at the moment."