New Look Vision Reports Strong Results for Fourth Quarter of Fiscal 2020
New Look Vision Group reported financial results for the 13 and 52 week periods ended December 26, 2020 and provided updates on actions in response to COVID-19, store re-openings, on omnichannel and facility consolidation.
The Company has adopted IFRS 16 Leases effective Q1 2020 and has applied it on a modified retrospective approach; the operating results of previous fiscal periods have not been restated. Occupancy costs previously recorded as operating expenses are now recorded through depreciation of right-of-use assets and interest expenses on lease liabilities.
Q4 2020 highlights, excluding the impact of IFRS 16, where applicable are:
• Revenues increased by 25.0% compared to the fourth quarter of last year to reach $92.4 million as a result of comparable store sales and revenues from newly acquired stores.
• Comparable store sales were up 12.0% as a result of enhanced store operating procedures and a shift in customer behavior.
• Adjusted EBITDA attributed to shareholders reached $22.8 million, a 59.8% increase over the fourth quarter of last year.
• The Company actively continued to pursue its significant pipeline of acquisition opportunities in Canada and the United States and acquired 15 stores in the quarter.
Full year 2020 highlights, excluding the impact of IFRS 16, where applicable are:
• Annual revenues, as expected, decreased due to government mandated store network shutdowns and related headwinds offset by newly acquired stores.
• Adjusted EBITDA attributed to shareholders was $56.9 million, an increase of 1.9% over last year (with a corresponding increase of 1.7% on a per diluted share basis to $3.63.)
• Cash flows related to operating activities reached $58.0 million, increasing by $14.4 million or 33.0% (and increased 32.6% on a per diluted share basis to $3.70 year-over-year.)
• Net debt was $167.9 million compared to $143.9 million.
• The Company actively continued to pursue its significant pipeline of acquisition opportunities in Canada and the United States and acquired 36 stores during the year.
Antoine Amiel, the President and CEO of New Look Vision, stated that: “New Look Vision showed remarkable resilience this past quarter and year to overcome unprecedented challenges driven by the COVID-19 pandemic and ongoing market headwinds. Despite closures and disruptions in the first half of 2020, New Look Vision continued to execute on its strategy and delivered strong results for the fourth quarter of fiscal 2020. Quarterly revenues and comparable store sales grew by 25.0% and 12.0% year-over-year and EBITDA increased by 60% over the same quarter last year. I am grateful for the strength and dedication of our teams to deliver on our strategy and continue to serve the needs of our loyal and new customers in a challenging environment.”
COVID-19 and Store re-opening
Gradual store reopenings started on May 4th in line with local and professional regulations, with all of New Look Vision’s entire store network open for business by the end of the second quarter.
COVID-19 has significantly altered the way optical retailers operate on both brick and mortar and eCommerce levels. As consumers increasingly move online, New Look Vision’s investments in omnichannel experience and anticipation of the evolving consumer journey complements and enhances its physical retail presence. This approach increases accessibility to differentiated, customized and precise eyecare, while ensuring safety for consumers across Canada. Our central lens processing facility pivoted to begin producing safety eyewear for use in health care facilities.
Status of Dividend
Effective March 19, 2020, the Company’s Board of Directors suspended the regular quarterly dividend and the corresponding dividend reinvestment plan until further notice, due to the pending impact of the pandemic on the Company’s business and liquidity.
As at February 27, 2021, New Look Vision had 15,660,199 Class A common shares issued and outstanding.
Arrangement Agreement to be Acquired
On March 18, 2021, the Company announced that it had entered into an arrangement agreement to be acquired by NL1 AcquireCo Inc., an entity created by a group composed of funds managed by FFL Partners, LLC, Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec , and the Dr. H. Doug Barnes Family.
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