Chocolate maker Thorntons said full year profit declined as Own Store sales continued to suffer.
The group, which issued a profit warning earlier this year, said it expects market conditions to remain tough.
Pre-tax profit fell by 2.4% to £6.1m in the year ended 26 June 2010. Revenues remained flat at £214.6m.
While Thorntons said it expects market conditions to remain rocky, it believes its more streamlined business puts it in a stronger position moving ahead.
"Thorntons has entered the new financial year as a leaner business, but also with a good indicative order level from our Commercial customers and various initiatives to recover Own Store trading; and this puts the company in a stronger position to face the challenges ahead," Thorntons said in a company statement.
Sales of Thorntons branded products grew by 4.7% on last year but Thorntons added that the key challenge continues to be its Own Stores channel, which experienced a decline in sales, particularly in the second half of the financial year.
"Since the year-end, trading in what is traditionally a quieter period has been in line with our expectations. We have strengthened our senior Retail management team and we believe that this, together with extensive product innovation and changes to the promotional and marketing programmes, should have a positive impact on trading in the lead up to Christmas," the group added.
The final dividend has been reduced to 4.10p compared to 4.85p in 2009.
Net debt was reduced £0.7m to £26m.
Thorntons said the selection process for a new chief executive is well advanced. Mike Davies retires at the end of September.
Chocolatier Thorntons said an encouraging performance during its key Valentine's Day, Mother's Day and Easter period makes it confident that full year pre-exceptional profit before tax will be substantially ahead of the current market expectation with the potential for further improvement in the final quarter. [24 Apr '13]
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