Mothercare, which is a specialist brand for parents and young children, has issued a pre-close trading update for the financial year ended 27 March 2021.
Unaudited net worldwide franchisee retail sales for the financial year to March 2021 were £326 million, which is £216 million (40 per cent.) below the prior year reflecting the impact of Covid-19 in the various markets in which the group's franchisees operate around the world.
The statement added: "We continue to work towards our goal of becoming an asset light business, greatly facilitated by the implementation of our new way of stock purchasing, meaning that our franchise partners contract to pay for products directly with our manufacturing partners."
Clive Whiley, Chairman of Mothercare, said: "Our performance in 2021 shows that whilst we are not immune to the impact of the pandemic on our franchise partners' operations around the world, we have ended the year in a far stronger position than we started it.
"Our resilient performance and financial position bears out the robustness of the Mothercare business today, delivering what will be a positive if modest EBITDA result for the year. We enter FY22 as a conservatively financed, cash generative and profitable business.
"We expect 2022 to be a year of further progress and we can now focus upon developing our strategy and future plans to optimise the competencies and attributes of Mothercare over the next five years. That is an exciting prospect for all of our staff and stakeholders as we hopefully exit this most uncertain of times."