COVID-19: Gap reports nearly USD 1bn losses for store closures

- A Monitor Desk Report 06 Jun, 2020 | 634 Views|-+
Dhaka: American global worldwide clothing retailer Gap Inc on June 4 reported a quarterly loss of nearly USD 1 billion as they were forced to close stores due to the coronavirus pandemic, sending its shares down about 8 per cent after market hours.

Retailers that sell non-essential goods such as clothing have been crushed by the COVID-19 outbreak as they were forced to restrict their businesses to online operations and curbside pickups.

San Francisco-based Gap, which operates nearly 2,800 stores in North America, said 55 per cent of its company-operated stores in the region were now open and sales from online operations were booming.

The company's more expensive brands Gap and Banana Republic did not do well as customers opted for casual clothing as they stayed at home during the lockdowns, said Sonia Syngal, Chief Executive Officer of Gap Inc.

However, its affordable clothing brands, Old Navy and Athleta, were seeing signs of strong demand, Syngal added.

The retailer, which is streamlining its fleet of retail stores, said it would prioritize closing some Gap stores and seek rent concessions for well-positioned stores that cannot support the current rent structures.

"While our economics in our Old Navy and Athleta fleets are strong, our specialty store fleet (Gap and Banana Republic) has not been as profitable as we need it to be," said Katrina O'Connell, Chief Financial Officer of the company in a conference call with analysts.

Net loss came in at USD 932 million, or USD 2.51 per share, for the three months ended May 2, which included a USD 484 million write-down on store and operating lease assets and a USD 235 million charge on excess inventory.

Net sales fell 43 per cent to USD 2.11 billion from USD 3.71 billion.

Analysts had forecast a loss of 67 cents per share and revenue of USD 2.30 billion.

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