SYDNEY — Australian surfwear firm Billabong International Ltd. booked a net loss for the 12 months ended June 30, 2016, blaming higher tax expenses for its performance.
The Gold Coast, Queensland-based company reported a net loss of 23.7 million Australian dollars for fiscal 2016, or $17.5 million at average 2016 exchange. That compares to a net profit of 4.15 million Australian dollars in fiscal 2015, or $3.12 million.
Sales rose 4.6 percent to 1 billion Australian dollars, or $813.35 million. They were down 1.4 percent on a constant currency basis.
Excluding significant items and discontinued operations, EBITDA fell 13 percent to 57.5 million Australian dollars, or $43 million.
Comparable gross margins declined 2 percent for the year, reflecting the higher cost of goods and markdowns in the United States.
The company’s three biggest brands are Billabong, Element and RVCA. Billabong revenue grew 1.9 percent, Element’s sales increased 5.3 percent and RVCA’s revenue grew 18.1 percent on a constant currency basis.
Same store sales, including brick-and-mortar and e-commerce, were up 1.8 percent on a constant currency basis, including an increase of 52 percent surge in global e-commerce sales.
Billabong chief executive officer Neil Fiske said the group had made “significant” progress in the last year.
Investors weren’t quite so positive, however, with Billabong’s share price diving more than 19 percent in early-morning trading, before closing down 16 Australian cents, or 10 percent, at 1.41 Australian dollars, or $1.07.
“Against a backdrop of global uncertainly and industry change, we continue to focus on the levers within our control, including inventories, initiatives to lift margins, cost of doing business and quality distribution” said Fiske.
“Our strategy is to create strong global brands with tight distribution and an omni platform that integrates wholesale, retail stores, [e-commerce] and social media. That’s the way our consumer wants to shop. In an industry in transition, we believe our strategy is right and positions us well.”