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Shoe Zone confident for future as annual profit rises; lifts dividend

9th Jan 2024 10:32

(Alliance News) - Shoe Zone PLC on Tuesday declared a higher dividend as the retailer reported a higher annual profit buoyed by a "strong peak summer."

The Leicester-based footwear seller said pretax profit climbed 19% to GBP16.2 million in the financial year the ended September 30 from GBP13.6 million the year prior.

Revenue grew 6.1% to GBP165.7 million from GBP156.2 million, while cost of sales increased by just 4.2% to GBP124.8 million from GBP119.8 million.

The company proposed a final dividend of 8.9 pence, up sharply from 3.3p a year prior, and a special dividend of 6.0, down 27% from 8.2p. This brings the total dividend for financial 2023 to 17.4p, up 2.4% from 17.0p.

"We ended the period trading out of 323 stores, having closed 72 stores, opened 35 new stores, and refitted a further 15 existing stores to our new formats. As we refit existing stores to our new formats, the branded mix will continue to form a higher proportion of our overall sales," Shoe Zone said.

Looking ahead, the company said: "We expect product margin levels to increase in the next financial year as we are forecasting a full 12 months of lower container prices compared to 6 months realised last year. Our buying and shipping teams are doing an exceptional job of managing the direct from factory supply chain, which is still volatile, and we are confident we are performing better than the market average."

Shoe Zone shares were up 3.1% to 233.00 pence each on Tuesday morning in London.

By Tom Budszus, Alliance News slot editor

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