H&M to shut 250 stores in 2021

H&M has revealed plans to close 350 stores and open 100 new stores over the next year, resulting in a net decrease of 250 stores worldwide.

The fast-fashion retailer said that most of the new openings will be in growth markets while closures will mainly be in established markets.

The company reported a sales boost of 75 per cent to 46,5 million SEK (£393 million) in the second quarter of the year.

In April, the brand reported a sales decline of 21 per cent in the first quarter, suffering a pre-tax loss of around £115 million.

For the first six months of the year, sales grew by 12 per cent to SEK 86,569 million (£732 million.)

“With our much-appreciated collections, our ongoing transformation and the fact that markets are gradually being opened up, our recovery is strong,” said Helena Helmersson, chief executive, H&M. “Online sales have continued to develop very well even as the stores have opened, which shows that customers appreciate the collections and being able to shop via their preferred channel.”

H&M said that its transformation continues at full speed to meet customers’ increased expectations. Helmersson highlighted the company’s initiatives with tech, AI, and the supply chain, where she said there had been great progress made.

“In the wake of the pandemic we are seeing increasing demand globally for fashion that provides value for money and is sustainable, which we are well positioned for,” she added. “Our brands are also offering an increasing number of services for a more sustainable lifestyle. In combination with our work to become circular and climate positive, we are also increasing the share of sustainable and renewable materials.”

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