The fashion designer has struggled more than other peers during the pandemic due to existing issues as a bricks-and-mortar retailer and of its reliance on occasionwear. Now that lockdowns are supposed to be a memory of the past, investors should be reassured by updates on how the strategy shift is working.
“Top of mind will be how online sales are doing. The pandemic only accelerated a seismic shift toward online shopping, one that Ted was fairly unprepared for. But the level of success of the newly launched digital platform will offer an insight into how turnaround efforts are doing. We’d like to see online sales making up a reasonable chunk of sales, even as lockdowns unwind,” analysts at Hargreaves Lansdown said.
“Another key measure of Ted’s turnaround efforts will be inventory management. The group has been bogged down by piles of unsold inventory, which had to be discounted, and in turn, weighed on margins. At the year-end, the group expects to have fully transitioned to a leaner model with product lifecycles slashed by a third.”
Auto Trader parks up with results
Admittedly, Auto Trader is one step removed from the used car sales business in that it merely matches up the buyer and seller but it must be galling for the company’s shareholders to see the share price gently decline this year while highly inflated valuations are put on Cazoo and Cinch, one of which has not even floated yet.
Auto Trader has the chance to put that right on Thursday with its full-year results statement, which is likely to feature a lot of detail about how the online marketplace has supported its customers – the car selling companies – during the prolonged lockdown by waiving listing fees.
The company said in January that it was expecting to swallow an operating loss of £5-7mln every month that its service was free to listers. As such, the lifting of restrictions on car dealers on April 12 could not have come soon enough for Auto Trader. Focus in Thursday’s statement will naturally be on how much pent-up demand has enabled the company to claw back some of those losses.
Thursday June 10:
Finals: Ted Baker PLC (LON:TED), Auto Trader Group PLC (LON:AUTO), CMC Markets PLC (LON:CMCX), Halma PLC (LON:HLMA), JLEN Environmental Assets Group Ltd (LON:JLEN), Norcros PLC (LON:NXR), Mitie Group PLC (LON:MTO)
Economic data: US inflation, US jobless claims