Theo Fennell issues profit warning as snow hits

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Lack of international festive shoppers will hit full-year results.

Theo Fennell has issued a profit warning after claiming that the snowy weather adversely affected its Christmas sales.

The jeweller said it is anticipating its full-year results to be below market expectations after its like-for-like sales dropped 7 percent in December. The brand has a strong start to the festive period with like-for-like sales up 22 percent in the first week of December but the wintery weather conditions went on to reduce footfall at its stockists.

Broker Seymour Pierce said it now expects a 2011 loss of £500,000 compared to a prior expectation of a £500,000 profit.

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Theo Fennell was also badly affected by the cancelled flights caused by the poor weather, which prevented international shoppers reaching the UK, and said that sales of its high-end and one-off pieces were directly affected as a result.

In September Theo Fennell chairman Rupert Hambro said he expected the jeweller to be unaffected by the VAT increase because the majority of its customer base was international.

Despite the high-end suffering Theo Fennell said that it was "very encouraged" by early sales of its new silver jewellery line, Alias, which launched in November. The range has already sold more than 2,000 pieces.

The brand also said that sales of its Keys, Bees and Spangles lines have remained robust.

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