Superdry co-founder Julian Dunkerton rejoined the fashion brand. He won the battle with the board who had left the brand miserable & struggling. Dunkerton’s return was not accepted by the board and took a dramatic turn when the entire board resigned altogether.
The fashion retailer had reported a pre-tax loss of £85.4m for the year to 27 April. Compared to a profit of £65.3m in the previous year, it was highly disturbing. Dunkerton has pinned the failure on the previous management and rightfully so. He also blamed the board’s lack of knowledge of the fashion business that led to this downfall.
Dunkerton had quit Superdry last year after disagreeing about the changes being made to how the company, which with annual sales of nearly £900m and 250 stores, was run.
Julian’s 18% stake in the brand had suffered a collapse of a disturbing £2oom. Sales were at £872m and underlying pre-tax profits slid 57% to £41.9m.
He complained that Sutherland, a former Co-op, and B&Q executive, did not understand fashion and it had gone from being an innovative brand to having a “misguided consultant-led business model”.
This executive decision had sparked a series of warnings at the end of last year. The shares have lost two-thirds of their value over the past year. Dunkerton’s controversial victory triggered a fresh-sell off and they closed down nearly 9%.
Dunkerton, alongside chairman Peter Williams, said he would strengthen the business by focusing on design, reigniting the brand DNA, rebuilding profitability and building a team to stabilize Superdry. He also addressed that the problems faced by the brand cannot be resolved overnight and will take time to stabilize.
Williams said that headhunters had been appointed to look for a new chief executive but appointing someone was a long-term aim. Also whoever will be the next CEO will have to work closely with Julian.
Julian, who has been appointed as an interim chief executive, has assured that they are taking the right initiatives. They have been successful to gain some early traction and is confident that within the next two years the situation will improve.