H&M said its financial position “remains strong” despite the losses
The fashion retailer saw profit collapse by 88.2 per cent during the year to November 30, 2020.
H&M said sales progress was “significantly negatively affected by the pandemic, particularly in the second quarter when stores were temporarily closed in most markets”.
At least 80 per cent of H&M’s store estate remained shut during the height of the pandemic.
H&M said it “rapidly implemented” a series of measures like greater emphasis” on its digital channels which has “partly compensated” for the slump in store sales.
The retailer saw a “strong recovery” at the start of its fourth quarter, but said this was “significantly slowed” when the second wave of the pandemic led to new restrictions and lockdowns across its global markets.
In the period from December 1, 2020, to January 27, 2021, net sales dropped 23 per cent on a local currency basis compared with the same period a year ago.
H&M said its financial position “remains strong” despite the losses and there were “good prospects” it would pay a dividend to shareholders in the autumn.