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Foyles reports third year of profitable trading
01.01.70 | Katie Allen
Foyles has reported a third year of profitable trading, despite "deep concern" about the impact of the development works near its flagship Charing Cross Road branch.
The independent bookselling chain reports net pre-tax profits of £204,681 for the financial year ending 30th June 2011. Turnover declined slightly to £22.8m, from £23.1m in 2010.
The retailer also predicts "good" Christmas trading results, with sales for the weekend of 17th-18th December up 5.8% on the same weekend last year across the chain. C.e.o. Sam Husain said that performance at the new store in Westfield Stratford City was performing "ahead of budget expectations".
However the impact of the development of Tottenham Court Road station has caused a "significant decrease in footfall" to the Charing Cross Road branch. Husain said: "This disruption continues to be of concern. We estimate the sales shortfall at about £1.5m on an annualised basis. However, thanks to particularly strong trading in our other branches, we are only down 0.8% on our previous year.
"We, like many of our fellow retailers on Charing Cross Road, are deeply concerned about the increasing adverse impact on trading in the area. We have been in constant communication with the City authorities and Transport for London to seek to remedy or at least mitigate the issue, and will continue to pursue all avenues to find a long term solution to this situation." Foyles is set to move the store into the former St Martin's college building next door in "2013 or 2014".
The retailer also pointed to two exceptional costs—the restructuring of the bookshop at Westfield White City and the gala dinner to celebrate the 80th anniversary of Foyles' Literary Luncheons.
Changes throughout the year include the opening of Foyles first branch in Cabot Circus, Bristol; the acquisition of Grant & Cutler's Foreign Language business; the redesign of the website; and an expansion of its literary events programme.
Husain added: "It has been a particularly challenging retail environment this year but I am pleased that our business has remained resilient and we have countered the disruption on Charing Cross Road by replacing lost revenue with new business streams. We recently launched a new bookshop in Westfield Stratford City and will continue to explore opportunities to open new bookshops at other key locations in the UK.
"However, we remain committed to offering our customers a high degree of specialisation and an unrivalled range of books in our London flagship store on Charing Cross Road. None of this is possible without the continuing endeavour, expertise, dedication and commitment of the management team and all the staff at Foyles."