StockMarketWire.com - Moss Bros' FY pretax profit rose to £4.4m, from £3.1m. Revenue was £109.1m, from £105.5m. It proposed a final dividend of 4.7p, taking the total to 5.0p, up from 4.1p a year ago.

Group like-for-like (LFL) sales were up 4.2% to £122.2m, including VAT. LFL retail sales rose 6.4%, while LFL hire sales fell 6.4%.

Underlying gross margin improved in H2, falling in total for the year by only 60 basis points to 59.0% despite a lower participation of the higher margin hire business in the overall sales mix.

"We enter the new financial year with a strong balance sheet and a commitment to a significantly increased dividend," said CEO Brian Brick in a statement.

"The ongoing cash generation of the business will support the continued investment in store refits and develop our multi-channel capability," he said.

Brick added that 2014 would see an increase in marketing to support the opportunities identified in the findings of the customer insight project, conducted in 2013.

"We will adopt "Moss Bros" as the master brand and will launch Moss branded sub brands in Autumn 2014."

Sales in the first eight weeks of the current year are up 7.3%, with LFL gross profit in the eight weeks to March 22 up 6.4%.




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