(Toronto) Retailer Roots reported a loss of $8.9 million for its most recent quarter, compared to a loss of $8.0 million for the same period last year.

The Toronto-based company said its loss was 22 cents per share for the quarter that ended May 4, compared with a loss of 19 cents per share a year earlier.

Sales totaled 37.5 million in the first quarter, down from 41.5 million in the same quarter last year.

The decline came as Roots said its direct-to-consumer sales totaled $31.4 million, down from $35.4 million a year ago. Partner sales totaled $6.1 million, flat from a year ago.

Roots chief executive Meghan Roach said the company’s disciplined approach to inventory management resulted in fewer discounted sales, which created short-term downward pressure on revenues in the first quarter.

On the other hand, consumers have purchased less due to inflation and high interest rates.

Ms Roach said it was “difficult” to analyze which of these factors had a greater impact.

“We’ve seen a decline in discount sales, so obviously discretionary consumer spending (is) under more pressure,” she said.

“If we had more merchandise to sell at a discount, we obviously think it could have increased sales a little more. »

Roots has spent the last few quarters cutting back on discount sales, a strategy that can cause shoppers to wait to get their hands on new products until they find them at a discount.

Low supply for synthetic clothing was also responsible for the decline in Roots sales.

“We faced supply issues with our Cooper fleece category, which performed very well in the fourth quarter, but there was insufficient supply to meet demand,” Roach said.

The company also spent the quarter renovating two of its largest stores, including the Eaton Center in Toronto.

Since the sites reopened, Roach said the business has seen its performance rebound.

The CEO also mentioned that she continued to see positive momentum in many product lines, including solid growth in its adult sportswear collection.