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Birks Sales Slide After Store Closures

Canada-based retailer sees 33% slump in six months ending September 26.
Nov 29, 2020 9:29 AM   By Rapaport News
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Canada-based jewelry retailer Birks Group saw sales slump in its first fiscal half as the coronavirus forced stores to shut for much of the period.

Revenue slid 33% year on year to just over CAD 57 million ($43.9 million) in the six months that ended September 26, the company reported Friday. It incurred a net loss of CAD 2.8 million ($2.2 million), though that was still a 38% improvement over the previous year’s loss.

Birks closed all its stores on March 18 due to the pandemic. By July, it had reopened them all, albeit with reduced operating hours.

“The decrease in net sales was primarily attributable to the effects of Covid-19 and the resulting temporary closures of all stores across the retail channel during the first quarter of fiscal 2021,” the company explained. Strong e-commerce sales partly offset the decline, accounting for 4.5% of total revenue for the six months, compared with 1% a year earlier.

Birks shut its store in Winnipeg, Manitoba, on November 12 amid a second virus wave, and it is set to remain closed for four weeks. On November 23, the company shuttered six Ontario locations for the same duration, including its flagship in Toronto. The stores are still offering concierge telephone services and curbside pickup.

Image: Sign outside a Birks store in Toronto, Canada. (Shutterstock)
Tags: birks, birks group, Canada, Coronavirus, COVID-19, e-commerce, Jewelry, Manitoba, Ontario, pandemic, Rapaport News, retail, toronto, Winnipeg
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