PracticeConsultingThe Financial Week Ahead – Newswatch: Turbulent times in toyland.

The Financial Week Ahead - Newswatch: Turbulent times in toyland.

Hamleys' annual results day on 15 June - with no FD in place - will be no time to toy with investors.

It has been a turbulent year for the toy company in which musical chairs have been played in the boardroom, the appointment of the fourth new chief executive in as many years was made, complaints have been aired about the company’s lacklustre share performance, and rumours have spread that the chairman’s job might be under threat.

When the results come out the time for game-playing will be over. The latest round in Hamleys’ history began in July last year with the appointment of chartered accountant Simon Burke to the post of chief executive.

In January the sitting FD John Foster resigned signalling the first of Burke’s changes.

In April, adjustments continued when non-executive director Stephen Woodbridge announced he was stepping down.

Despite all this, sales in the stores seemed to be doing well enough for the toymasters to claim things were looking up.

Figures released in April showed 4.5% growth at the flagship Regent Street store, while Toystack, the company’s other brand, saw a healthy sales rise of 6.7% for the second half of the year. This was despite disclosing that the 12 months to January saw profits fall from #6.4m to #670,000.

Burke however, remains confident and is reported to be saying the company is making ‘gradual progress towards recovery’.

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