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When Simon Calver joined Mothercare in April 2012, it was hoped that he would be more successful in tapping into the baby boom that the UK was enjoying. After just less than a year and a half, he has stepped down from his position as chief executive officer and the company is actively looking for a replacement. Although no official word has been given as to the change in management, Mothercare issued a profits warning in January after it saw UK sales drop by 4% during the important Christmas period.
The struggling retailer has seen its market space eaten into by supermarkets that have broadened their product offerings and online sales. The changing demographics of the UK and global retail shopper have not helped the firm. Footfall numbers still remain high as shoppers go into Mothercare stores to visualise and handle goods; however, too many of these shoppers then return home to buy the product online from a cheaper retailer.
The shares started the year at 392p but are now down 53% to 183p, and are heavily oversold on the relative strength index. Without a CEO to guide them, it would be difficult to have too much confidence in the next trading figures expected on 10 April and expect them to have turned the corner.