The Paphitis retail group has reported a ‘resilient’ performance amid ‘challenging’ conditions in both its full year and Christmas results.
Total revenue for Ryman increased by 1.4% to £129.9m in the full financial year, while EBITDA increased 6.5% to £8.2m. This reflected “new categories, development of related services and customer engagement in store”.
Meanwhile, Robert Dyas gave a “strong performance”, with total revenue increasing 6.3% to £131.8m in the full year. EBITDA increased to £1.6m, up from £0.5m in 2018, thanks to “strong” online growth and a “good” performance in outdoor goods over summer.
Boux Avenue, however, experienced “challenging” trading conditions, which has led to an “ongoing strategic and operational review” of the business.
In the six weeks ended 24 December 2019, group like-for-like fell by 1.3%, due to a reduction in sales at Boux Avenue, flat sales at Ryman and positive sales at Robert Dyas.
Group online sales increased 21.8% over the same period, after “strong” e-commerce growth at Ryman, London Graphic Centre and Robert Dyas.
Theo Paphitis, owner of the group, said: “Looking back at the prior financial year and this Christmas, our group has delivered a resilient performance in what has been the most challenging retail environment we have ever experienced, underpinned by consumer uncertainty and declines in footfall.
“I am pleased that Ryman and Robert Dyas, as heritage brands on our high streets, have traded well over the prior financial year. Both businesses put in good performances, growing sales and profits as they focused on strong retail execution and category development, both online and in store. Christmas trading was also creditable for both businesses.”
He added: “As I have previously said, the lack of reform and focus on business rates by the Government and other authorities continues to frustrate us and puts at risk one of the key sectors for the UK economy.
“However, I am a firm believer that both physical and online retail have a future and we are seeing that we are able to deliver further growth through our heritage brands, Ryman and Robert Dyas, through our e-commerce and other new channels.”