However, Jessops points out that it achieved a 1.3% growth in like-for-like sales against a general digital camera market decline of 7%. Total turnover rose by 3% to £236.8m.
The firm’s total profit, before removing factors such as interest, taxation, depreciation and non-recurring costs, rose to £5.6m, compared to £3.9m the year before.
A year earlier, Jessops notched up a profit after tax of £111.3m. However, after stripping out non-recurring items relating to corporate restructuring, Jessops said it made an underlying loss of £3.1m in the 12 months to 2 January 2011. This marked an improvement on the 15-month period to 3 January 2010 when Jessops recorded a loss of £48.1m (£11.2m loss after accounting for non-recurring costs).
Outlining the principal risks and uncertainties facing the firm, the directors state in their latest report: ‘Jessops operates in a very competitive retail environment and there is an ongoing risk that sales may be lost to rival businesses.
‘The general economic environment and market condition for the products and services are also risks common to all retailers.
‘The directors believe that one of the key differentiators of the Jessops business model are (sic) customer service and choice and they seek to build on these to set the company apart from its competitors.’
Though its current uncommitted overdraft facility is due for review in November 2012, Jessops’ directors are confident that the group’s bank, HSBC, will ‘meet the funding requirements at and beyond the formal facilities renewal date…’.
The directors add: ‘While the directors anticipate market conditions will remain challenging in the foreseeable future, with its multi-channel proposition supported by innovation, Jessops is well positioned to deliver further profitable market share growth.’
Last week, Jessops announced a rise in turnover but did not disclose whether it had made a profit or a loss.
The group’s full accounts are now available to view at Companies House.
In May, Canon dismissed as ‘rumour and speculation’ a Sunday Times report that it was set to invest £10m in Jessops.
In April, the Independent newspaper reported that HSBC – which owns the majority of Jessops shares – approached US-based financial restructuring adviser Zolfo Cooper to discuss ‘financial planning and strategy’.
Last month, a spokesperson for Zolfo Cooper told Amateur Photographer that it would be inappropriate to comment on the matter.