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The Danish company has in recent years become synonymous with charms, which make up over half of its sales. But their popularity is fading, and Pandora hasn't been able to revive it. Pandora's stock has been cut in half this year, and the company said Thursday that CEO Anders Colding Friis would step down at the end of August. The announcement caps a tumultuous few days for the company. Pandora stock crashed 24% on Tuesday after the firm slashed its sales forecast for 2018. On Thursday, it reported that charm sales declined 7% in the first quarter. "They need to fix the charms challenge," said Soeren Loentoft Hansen, a senior analyst at Sydbank. "The business is very important because it drives traffic to the stores."
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Danish jeweller Pandora ousted its chief executive on Thursday to try to regain investor confidence after the company said this week it would cut jobs and warned on profits. Shares in Pandora, known for its silver charm bracelets, rose as much as 9 percent on the news and as it appointed former The Body Shop CEO Jeremy Schwartz to jointly run the company with newly named chief financial officer Anders Boyer in the interim. The shares had plunged by 24 percent on Monday when the company cut its 2018 sales growth outlook to 4-7 percent, and its EBITDA margin outlook for the year to around 32 percent, the latest in a slew of bad news.
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The profit warning came just seven months after CEO Anders Colding Friis, who has been criticised by investors for poor communication during his three-year leadership, set out the goals as part of Pandora’s strategy towards 2022. “We are very aware that investors are questioning this process. At some point you have to make a decision and that was what we did this morning,” Pandora Chairman Peder Tuborgh told Reuters. Friis is the second top executive to quit the company after CFO Peter Vekslund resigned earlier this year after the firm missed its own 2017 sales forecasts and said margins would be thinner. Pandora sells customisable jewellery such as charms.
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Pandora acknowledged that the new strategy it launched in January, aimed at rectifying a lack of innovation and weak growth in key markets, was not progressing as fast as expected. It has especially been challenged by consumers buying fewer charms per bracelet, Boyer told Reuters. “We had expected we could reverse that trend with all of our new products, but that hasn’t happened yet,” he said. Sales of charms, the backbone of Pandora’s jewellery assortment, declined 7 percent in the second quarter. Sales of other jewellery in its new ‘Shine’ collection, launched in March, had been well received, it said. Pandora confirmed preliminary second-quarter sales of 4.8 billion crowns.