EANS-News: Wolford AG: Detailed Figures Announced for the First Half-Year 2019/20

Corporate news transmitted by euro adhoc with the aim of a Europe-wide distribution. The issuer is responsible for the content of this announcement.

Mid Year Results

Bregenz -

  • New Management Board is developing a plan to reposition the company
  • Revenue down 3% - Operating loss of EUR 9.4 million
  • Medium-term forecast remains unchanged

Bregenz, December 13, 2019: Wolford AG, which is listed on the Vienna Stock Exchange, generated revenue of EUR 60.49 million in the first six months of the current financial year (May 2019 to April 2020), comprising a decrease of 3.0% from the comparable prior-year figure of EUR 62.37 million. Similar to fashion retailers across the globe, Wolford is suffering the consequences of a far-reaching structural transformation along with declining customer frequencies in the Western European fashion markets. Operating earnings (EBIT) in the first half-year amounted to EUR -9.38 million, compared to EUR -5.92 million in the previous year. This development is primarily related to the drop in revenue. Interest payments roses substantially by EUR 1.60 million, which is mainly due to the first-time application of the new accounting standards IFRS 16. Accordingly, earnings before tax equaled EUR -12.03 million, down from EUR -6.61 million in the prior-year period. Earnings after tax totaled EUR -11.86 million compared to EUR -7.33 million in the first half of the previous financial year.

New accounting standard IFRS 16 leads to shifts in the income statement and balance sheet

Within the context of further reduction of administrative staff in Bregenz in the 2018/19 financial year, the average number of employees (FTE) in the first six months was down by 68 to the current total of 1,282 employees (previous year's average: 1,350 employees (FTE)). Accordingly, personnel expenses fell by EUR 0.89 million compared to the first half of 2018/19 to EUR 30.27 million. Depreciation and amortization in the first half of the current financial year climbed from EUR 3.63 million to EUR 9.22 million as a result of the initial application of IFRS 16.

As a result of the losses generated in the current and previous financial years, equity of the Wolford Group fell to EUR 30.96 million as at October 31, 2019 (October 31, 2018: EUR 48.16 million). In light of the shareholder loan of EUR 10 million granted by Fosun Fashion Investment Holdings (HK) Limited, net debt rose from EUR 25.21 million to EUR 33.51 million as at October 31, 2019. The equity ratio fell to 18% (October 31, 2018: 39%) whereas gearing deteriorated to 108% from 52% in the prior-year period. Both developments must be considered against the backdrop of the initial application of IFRS 16 and the increase in the balance sheet total.

Plan to reposition Wolford currently under development: Program for revenue growth, improved efficiency and cost reductions

The new Management Board team consisting of Silvia Azzali and Andrew Thorndike, which has only been in office for a few weeks, is currently working with company executives to precisely analyze the situation and on this basis develop a master plan for Wolford consisting of short-, medium- and long-term measures. The target is to achieve a sustainable repositioning of Wolford as a profitable company with strong product lines and a clear customer orientation. At the same time, the goal is to adjust costs in line with revenue development.

It goes without saying that the company is examining the viability of some individual boutique locations. On the other hand, Wolford's presence should be expanded in markets where there is a demonstrable growth potential, predominantly with the help of wholesale partners. For example, Wolford is now represented on the Japanese market again for the first time after an absence of several years. There were further important openings of partner boutiques in the EMEA region i.e. in Istanbul, Prague and Belgrade. In the Chinese growth market, Wolford opened three new partner boutiques on the Chinese mainland during the first half of the current financial year. Furthermore, Wolford is making targeted investments in omni-channel sales. Accordingly, Wolford recently began to cooperate with the luxury fashion platform Farfetch, one of the world's most important online shippers of luxury fashion. The first pilot project with the Wolford boutique in Milan led to a revenue increase of about 30% within a three-week period, including many orders from countries in which Wolford has hardly been active up until now, for example Saudi Arabia and Hungary.

The management has identified considerable cost-saving potential along the value chain, including purchasing. Wolford centralized its purchasing process within a single management structure over the last few weeks and has developed specific cost-reduction measures in cooperation with the new Head of Purchasing and his team which are already being implemented.

Outlook

On the basis of the current analysis of all relevant areas in the company, the new Management Board team will develop a plan to reposition Wolford AG encompassing short-, medium- and long-term measures. On the basis of the latest findings, the management confirms its previous plans to return Wolford to profitability in the 2020/21 financial year.

The report for the first half-year 2019/20 can be downloaded under company.wolford.com, Investor Relations.

Earnings 05 - 10/19 05 - 10/18 Chg. in % 2018/19 Data Revenues in EUR mill. 60,49 62,37 -3 137,22 EBIT in EUR mill. -9,38 -5,92 -58 -8,98 Earnings in EUR mill. -12,03 -6,61 -82 -10,11 before tax Earnings in EUR mill. -11,86 -7,33 -62 -11,10 after tax Capital in EUR mill. 0,93 1,84 -49 5,16 expenditure Free cash in EUR mill. -6,04 -16,41 63 -10,88 flow Employees FTE 1.282 1.350 -5 1.347 (on average)

Balance Sheet 31.10.2019 31.10.2018 Chg. in % 30.04.2019 Data Equity in EUR mill. 30,96 48,16 -36 42,72 Net debt in EUR mill. 33,51 25,21 33 19,62 Working in EUR mill. 33,26 43,29 -23 31,07 capital Balance sheet in EUR mill. 174,88 123,68 41 117,99 total Equity ratio in % 18 39 -54 36 Gearing in % 108 52 <100 46 Stock Exchange 05 - 10/19 05 - 10/18 Chg. in % 2018/19 Data Earnings per in EUR -1,79 -1,10 -63 -1,76 share Share price in EUR 11,80 17,70 -33 17,70 high Share price in EUR 5,50 12,30 -55 10,60 low Share price at in EUR 6,40 12,30 -48 11,40 end of period Shares outstanding in 1,000 6.320 6.631 -5 6.320 (weighted) Market capitalization in EUR mill. 43,00 82,65 -48 75,59 (ultimo)

end of announcement euro adhoc

issuer: Wolford Aktiengesellschaft
Wolfordstrasse 1
A-6900 Bregenz
phone: +43(0) 5574 690-1258
FAX: +43(0) 5574 690-1410
mail: investor@wolford.com
WWW: http://company.wolford.com
ISIN: AT0000834007
indexes: ATX GP
stockmarkets: New York, Frankfurt, Wien
language: English

Digital press kit: http://www.ots.at/pressemappe/16324/aom

Rückfragen & Kontakt:

Wolford AG
Maresa Hoffmann
Investor Relations & Corporate Communications
Tel.: +43 5574 690 1258
investor@wolford.com | company.wolford.com

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