Following what CEO Heather Reisman called the "biggest year in our history" in the fiscal year ended March 30, 2018, Indigo Books & Music reported a 3.0% decline in sales for the most recent fiscal year compared to fiscal 2018 and a net loss of C$36.8 million compared to earnings of C$21.9 million last year. Total revenue for the Canadian chain was C$1.05 billion, down from C$1.08 billion in fiscal 2018.
Indigo cited a host of reasons for the decline, which also saw comparable store sales drop 1.1% from a year ago. According to Indigo, "revenue was challenged by the operating stresses stemming from major store renovations, relocations, store closures, and the prolonged Canada Post strike, which significantly impacted performance throughout the period with lagging effects into the fourth quarter. Results were then further impacted by a pull back in consumer spending on nonessentials in the fourth quarter."
Indeed, Indigo had a weak final quarter with comparable store sales down 8.7% from a year ago. Sales in the period dropped 7.4%, to C$199 million, and the net loss rose to C$23.8 million from C$10.7 million in the final quarter of fiscal 2018. The sluggish results prompted Indigo to launch a cost reduction and productivity initiative "focused on improving the company’s profitability in the coming fiscal year."
In conjunction with that effort, Indigo announced three management appointments including Nathan Williams as chief creative officer, effective June 3. Williams will be responsible for moving the company's global sourcing and product development functions back to Toronto from New York. Other appointments are the promotions of Kirsten Chapman to president and Gil Dennis to chief operating officer.