OKA cuts losses as online switch keeps sales solid
Furniture chain OKA saw a majority of its sales switch online last year.
Online accounted for 54% of sales in the year to 26 December 2020, as turnover dropped by £278,524 to £29.88m.
A pre-tax loss of £13.6m was reduced to £8.95m. During the year it issued £9m of loan notes which are due to be repaid in June 2027 at a cost of £18m. The company has £10m of tax losses to carry forward against future profits. Its parent company has £22m of losses to carry forward.
The company says that in the seven months to July, sales have been in line with budget and EBITDA profitability has been ahead of budget.
‘Whilst the initial impact on revenues from the pandemic was severe, the website and digital channels soon picked up a significant proportion of the lost revenue from the retail stores, and underlying trends such as consumers investing in their homes during lockdown, combined with a buoyant housing market, meant that the overall impact on the company's revenues was limited. All stores fully re-opened in April 2021 after the third national UK lockdown. OKA's customers are now navigating between channels more than ever before, combining offline and online interactions within single purchases through a seamless customer journey. OKA's direct-to-consumer strategy and significant IT investments have allowed the company to take advantage of the latest technology to interact with its customers. Alongside the increased focus on digital improvements, OKA has continued to work to redefine the in-store· experience, creating a comfortable and safe environment while transforming physical stores into engaging multichannel showrooms,’ says the company.
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