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Sep 5, 2017

Hudson's Bay posts $201M loss in latest quarter as challenges persist

Hudson's Bay posts wider-than-expected loss in latest quarter

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Hudson's Bay Co. (HBC.TO) has reported a net loss of $201 million in its last fiscal quarter, as it struggles to adapt to shifting industry trends.

The loss, which works out to almost $16 million a week over the thirteen weeks ended July 29, was an increase from the $142 million the company lost in the same quarter last year.

The retail giant has responded to the persistent losses with major restructuring, including the cutting of 2,000 jobs throughout North America, the expansion of its online offerings, and looking at ways to unlock more value from its vast real estate holdings.

The retailer has also seen significant changes at the top recently, with its president of HBC International departing, and new appointments for the chief financial officer and the president of Hudson's Bay.

The company said its investments in online sales is showing growth, with the 1.2 per cent increase in overall sales to $3.3 billion in the quarter coming largely from digital sales.

HBC continues to invest in its physical stores as well, opening a Hudson's Bay-branded store in Amsterdam on Tuesday, and scheduled to open a renovated designer floor of its flagship Saks Fifth Avenue store in New York on Friday.

Activist investors have urged the company to also tap into its real estate holdings, with the Saks Fifth Avenue store alone estimated to be worth $3.7 billion.

Founded in 1670, Hudson's Bay is the oldest company in North America. It employs more than 66,000 people and operates more than 480 stores under banners such as the Bay, Saks Fifth Avenue, Lord &Taylor, Gilt, and Saks Off 5th.