Because of the Coronavirus outbreak, Marks & Spencer reported substantial revenue declines in the clothing and home business. The brand’s outlook for the quarter-to-date group pre-tax profit (PBT) was adversely affected by the virus but was within the range of consumer expectations and in line with the guidance released in January through the current week. The final result may be at or below the bottom end of the £ 440m-£460 m PBT range, despite possibly very depressed apparel and home trading.
The corporation accepted the assistance on business rates from the British government as it paid out around £ 180 million last year for such property taxes in the British. It works to curb costs by postponing capital investment, postponing all wage increases and postponing or canceling discretionary spending. That includes reducing its spending on marketing. It also reduces the supply pipeline by more than £ 100 million, and works to increase its reach online.
The company is now preparing on the basis of a prolonged decline in clothing and home demand, and could temporarily close some of the stores. This dent to the clothing and home sector is projected to last in the new financial year for at least three or four months, although this could be easier when summer trading begins. Its margins are likely to be significantly affected by the surplus of unsold seasonal stock and possible market-place clearing activity.