N Brown, the plus size fashion retailer, has said it is on track to meet its full-year expectations despite recording a 19% decline in profits for the six months to August 27.
The Manchester-based group, which owns JD Williams, Simply Be and Jacamo, said its profits before tax fell to £31.6m from £39.4m.
However, its total group revenue rose 1% to £429.4m, largely driven by mobile penetration, with 70% of all traffic coming through smartphones.
Chief executive Angela Spindler said she is pleased with the progress the group made during the first half of the year as it continues to transform itself from a catalogue retailer to an online company.
“Spring Summer was challenging for the entire retail sector, and we were not immune to this, but we demonstrated our flexibility as we improved revenue performance through the season whilst controlling our costs well.
“The Autumn Winter season has started in line with our plans. Our improving agility is enabling us to trade the business in a volatile environment. At this stage we are comfortable with current market expectations for the full year.”
JD Williams product revenue, which includes the Fifty Plus brand, was up 0.3% to £75.8m, while Simply Be and Jacamo product revenue rose 6.2% and 3.3% respectively.
Product revenues for the group’s secondary brands, namely Fashion World, Figleaves and Marisota, grew 0.4% to £75.2m in the first half of the year.
Figleaves went live with a new Demandware web platform in September, which will allow N Brown to be more effective in driving future customer recruitment to this brand, the group said.