Belfast Telegraph

Home News UK

Next cautious despite profits rise

Next said it is remaining "very cautious" despite building its advantage over rival Marks & Spencer with a 12% rise in annual profits.

The surplus of £782.2 million comes after a year in which overall sales topped £4 billion for the first time with an increase of 7.2%.

Next, which last year beat the profits figure achieved by rival M&S, said it hopes to make as much as £835 million in the current financial year.

However, it remains cautious about prospects and has pencilled in sales growth of between 1.5% and 5.5% in the current year.

This is weaker than the range of 2.5% and 7.5% the company forecast in December.

Next chief executive Lord Wolfson said it would be a mistake to be over-optimistic despite the company's recent progress.

He added: "Although the consumer economy looks benign, we remain very cautious in our sales budgets.

"Whilst we are happy with most of our current product ranges, we recognise that some collections are not as strong as they were at this point last year.

"In addition, during the Spring and Summer seasons, we face very tough comparative numbers from last year, when sales were assisted by unusually warm weather."

Shares opened more than 3% lower today.

Your Comments

COMMENT RULES: Comments that are judged to be defamatory, abusive or in bad taste are not acceptable and contributors who consistently fall below certain criteria will be permanently blacklisted. The moderator will not enter into debate with individual contributors and the moderator’s decision is final. It is Belfast Telegraph policy to close comments on court cases, tribunals and active legal investigations. We may also close comments on articles which are being targeted for abuse. Problems with commenting?


From Belfast Telegraph