Products of change. News

H&M sales fall, but focus remains on recycled materials

Thu 11 Feb 2021 | 08:25 am GMT
Michelle Urquhart | Products of Change Writer

Sales may have dropped for H&M, but the group is in a strong position. Image: David Thunander

The latest full year report for the year ending November 2020 from H&M shows the impact Covid-19 has had, with sales dropping by 18% and gross profit falling by 88%. “The H&M group stands strong after all the challenges brought by the pandemic. Thanks to much appreciated collections, rapid and profitable online growth and strict cost control, the company succeeded in ending the year in profit and in a strong financial position,” says Helena Helmersson, CEO. The recent years’ transformation initiatives and investments, focusing on the digital have been especially important for managing the crisis and this work is continuing at full speed for the group. Online and physical stores are being increasingly integrated, with continued optimisation of the store portfolio. Around 100 new stores are planned to open in 2021, while 350 stores are planned to close in the same period - mainly in established markets. “Customers want to meet us where, when and how they choose – in the stores, on our websites, on digital marketplaces and on social media,” says Helena. “They are showing us clearly that they appreciate a convenient and inspiring experience in which the channels interact and strengthen each other. We are continuing our initiatives for digital growth, integration of the channels and optimisation of the store portfolio. Speed and flexibility will be even more important going forward, particularly in the supply chain, to ensure the best customer offering and increase availability in all channels.” One of the highlights picked out in the annual report was the group’s sustainability vision. The H&M group’s aim is to shift from virgin to recycled materials, with the goal of using 100 percent recycled or other sustainably sourced materials by 2030. Recycled materials are a limited resource and the group will use its size to increase the speed of the transition away from virgin materials, without causing harm in doing so. New technologies must be enhanced and scaled, and new materials must replace the old ones. To accelerate the use of recycled materials the H&M group has set a new target to reach 30 percent recycled materials by 2025. “Our key focus remains on developing strong, unique brands in order to always offer the best combination of fashion, quality, price and sustainability. The percentage of recycled and sustainable materials in the collections is consistently increasing and our brands are offering an ever-growing range of services for a more sustainable lifestyle. Together with our transformation initiatives this will help increase our resilience and adaptability and will contribute to sustainable and profitable growth for the H&M group,” says Helena.
related articles
Natural History Museum and Desmond & Dempsey launch range with 'sustainability at its core'

Influenced by the museum’s archives, vintage designs and old textbook illustrations, the new collection features three different designs each of which holds true to principles in sustainable fashion.

Read More

Fri 08 Oct 2021 | 11:32 am GMT

H&M teams with actress Maisie Williams

Fashion retailer partners with actress to lead a worldwide initiative towards a more sustainable future.

Read More

Tue 20 Apr 2021 | 05:42 am GMT

Icon launches sustainable Xmas jumper

Icon’s Christmas jumper range is made from 100% organic cotton and is reversible so can be worn throughout winter

Read More

Tue 15 Dec 2020 | 12:16 pm GMT

Asda’s pledge to sustainable school uniforms

This year, 100% of George at Asda’s schoolwear is sustainably sourced and is part of the retailer’s wider commitment to planet-friendly fashion

Read More

Mon 30 Nov 2020 | 12:27 pm GMT

Most read stories
POC talks BLE 2021 | Intergalactic Waste Race: Obki's mission to land sustainable licensing

Picked up by Sky Kids and adopted by Sky Zero as the face of its net zero carbon campaign at COP26, Obki is landing at BLE next week to launch…

Read More

Thu 11 Nov 2021 | 06:30 am GMT

Retailers join forces to Race to Zero

H&M Group, IKEA, B&Q and Walmart launched a new climate change initiative to accelerate movement in the retail industry to drive climate action.

Read More

Thu 22 Jul 2021 | 06:51 am GMT

Sustainability creates value for brands

“It doesn’t matter what you call it, as long as you do it,” Mattel’s head of sustainability, Pamela Gill-Alabaster commented about sustainability in a Licensing International webinar last week (18…

Read More

Tue 23 Mar 2021 | 06:56 am GMT

Wastebuster’s Toy Take Back scheme gains support

Project is driving a nationwide call to ‘recycle right’ with collected plastic toys being recycled into new products.

Read More

Thu 30 Jul 2020 | 06:57 am GMT

The circular economy is integral to growth

The circular economy is more relevant than ever and offers a vision for a future that works in the limits of our planet

Read More

Mon 30 Nov 2020 | 11:34 pm GMT

A vacuum cleaner built to last

Former Dyson engineer has created the Lupe Pure Cordless, a vacuum cleaner made from recycled plastic and each individual part is removable, replaceable and recyclable.

Read More

Fri 05 Mar 2021 | 11:10 am GMT

Bank of America commits to net zero

The company has outlined initial steps to achieve its goal of net zero greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in its financing activities, operations and supply chain before 2050.

Read More

Tue 16 Feb 2021 | 09:05 am GMT

DreamWorks Trolls teams with the UN to launch healthy and sustainable eating campaign

DreamWorks Animation’s Trolls franchise has partnered with the United Nations, the UN Food and Agriculture Organisation, and the UN Foundation for a digital campaign that encourages a healthy diet and…

Read More

Tue 23 Nov 2021 | 10:57 am GMT