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Dr. Martens Slips on Weak Operational Execution


Annual results for the iconic British brand Dr. Martens were held back in its most recent fiscal year ended March 31 due to a weak performance in the U.S. that was fueled by “poor operational execution,” the company said in a statement. U.S. annual revenues declined by 1 percent on a constant currency basis but rose by 12 percent on a reported basis to the equivalent of $532.8 million. The main drivers of the weaker-than-planned results in the region were poor implementation of a West Coast distribution center relocation from Portland, OR to Los Angeles, marketing campaigns that were too focused on shoes and sandals and not its iconic black boots, inadequate execution of its ecommerce business, and excess inventory levels.

Dr. Martens has a commenced a turnaround strategy for the region with total investments estimated at approximately $24.9 million. Actions will include the hiring of digital, marketing, and human resource personnel to help support ongoing brand marketing and new store investments. The company is also hiring a new head of operations for the region.

Overall, the company had a solid performance in FY23 with overall revenues increasing by 10 percent to top £1 billion British pounds ($1.24 billion) for the first time. Dr. Martens sold 13.8 pairs of footwear over the 12 months, down 2 percent year-over-year, and finished the period with 204 stores worldwide. On a reported basis, retail sales increased by 30 percent to the equivalent of $300.8 million; DTC revenue rose by 16 percent to $647.9 million and wholesale revenues jumped by 4 percent year-over-year to the equivalent of $596.8 million.