Sales at country clothing firm Hoggs of Fife have fallen by more than £1 million as the business felt the impact of Covid-19 and Brexit.
The firm and its sub-brand Fife Country provide country clothing and workwear, distributing to the UK retail trade sector and direct retailing via home shopping catalogues, internet sales and shop premises.
Newly-published accounts show sales at the Cupar-based company dropped from £8.1m in 2019 to just over £7m.
Pre-tax profit was also down from £1.18m to £748,000.
Wages and associated costs for the period fell from £1.3m to just over £1m.
Hoggs of Fife impacted by Brexit and Covid
In his report, company director Robert Fettes Gibson said: “The uncertainty caused by Brexit, exacerbated by the recent Covid-19 pandemic during the last three months of the financial year has severely impacted the retail sector.
“The pandemic has negatively impacted the worldwide economy.
“The threat of widespread unemployment and consumer debt levels continues to generate a lack of confidence in the entire economy.
“It is particularly impacting trade with retail outlets.”
He added that the impact of Covid and Brexit remained key considerations, as did the increased cost of goods.
The drop in customer spending power was also a factor, he said.
He said that the firm’s management are proactive in looking at alternative supply sources.
Mr Fettes Gibson added the Cupar-based company will be investing in technology to assist with increased online sales.
He said: “Acceleration of the trend to online selling provides both risks and opportunities to the business.”
Founded in 1888 and still in family ownership, Hoggs started out posting boots to customers and is believed to be Scotland’s oldest surviving mail order business.
Looking to the future and combating the issues raised, the will aim to provide high-quality products and prompt response times to its customers.
It also aims to maintain strong relationships with its customers, which include agricultural workers and outdoor pursuit enthusiasts.