“I don’t think there is room for two big re­tail gi­ants. ”

Anglers Mail - - Front Page -

Steve Col­lett for the six months ended June 30, 2018, the com­pany said that it is in a year of tran­si­tion, and that fi­nan­cial re­sults “re­flect the chal­leng­ing pe­riod, in­clud­ing the very dif­fi­cult trad­ing back­drop.”

Rev­enues of £3.4m for the pe­riod were down from £4.1m in the same pe­riod of 2017.

The com­pany has 14 large su­per­stores across the coun­try, as well an on­line busi­ness.

An­gler’s Mail colum­nist, tackle sup­plier and Eng­land lure fish­ing team man­ager Steve Col­lett com­mented: “I’m not sur­prised that the com­pany is strug­gling, as I don’t think there is room for two big re­tail gi­ants in what is a dif­fi­cult mar­ket.

“I did buy shares my­self, but soon got out, as I didn’t think their busi­ness model was very good.

“The CEO de­scribed or­di­nary tackle shops as be­ing run by ‘Mas and Pas’, but some of us have mil­lion-pound turnovers, and they had strange ideas about the age and gen­der of those who fish.

“But trade is gen­er­ally down, and even though my turnover has gone up, my profit mar­gin has de­clined. If I was on the stock ex­change, I would have to give a profit warn­ing.

“There are only so many big items of tackle, such as rods and reels, that peo­ple need, and so many an­glers can get tackle from spon­sors these days, or through eBay or Ama­zon.

“I feel sorry for the big tackle shop own­ers that the com­pany bought out, as I be­lieve they were largely paid in com­pany shares, which will be worth­less if the com­pany goes bust.

“I had heard that some of their stores lacked stock, and there is no doubt that many an­glers en­joy a smaller space that stinks of fish­ing, and where there are a cou­ple of codgers who reckon they’ve caught

4 lb roach and 40 lb pike!” Steve con­cluded.

In stark con­trast, An­gling Di­rect, the UK’s other big tackle re­tail gi­ant PLC, is thriv­ing, hav­ing re­cently ob­tained a fur­ther £20 mil­lion in in­vest­ment after a suc­cess­ful re­lease of shares.

It has plans to open 20 new stores in the next two years, to add to the 24 they al­ready own.

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