Belfast Telegraph

...but rival's profits soar 129% to £14.3m

By Ravender Sembhy

Online retailer has reported a surge in profits for the first half of the year after strong demand for its plus-size and petite clothing helped sales soar.

The fast-fashion firm said pre-tax profits rocketed 129% to £14.3m in the six months to August 31, while sales rose 40% to £127.3m.

Boohoo said its performance was driven by its core womenswear ranges, plus-size and petite clothing and a standalone menswear website, where sales have doubled.

Boohoo saw growth in every location, with revenue rising 38% in the UK, 41% in Europe and 93% in the US.

And the firm said it had 4.5 million "active" customers - which was up 28% on the year before.

The company said the collapse of sterling against the US dollar had "not significantly" affected its results because it has hedged against currency fluctuations.

However, it added that a weaker pound "does provide the opportunity to use promotional activity to generate incremental international sales", adding: "It remains to be seen what the longer term effect of continued sterling weakness might be in the supply chain."

The firm's joint chief executives, Mahmud Kamani and Carol Kane, said that, as a result of the strong results, they now expect revenue growth for the full year of between 30% and 35%.

The pair added: "Our inclusive brand and unbeatable choice, together with our incredible prices and fantastic service, continue to inspire and appeal to young customers around the world.

"We are pleased to report a strong performance in the first half of the year, with robust growth across all regions and continued momentum in new customer growth.

"Through our constant focus on what matters to our customers, together with our investment in technology and operational improvements, we will continue to deliver profitable growth."

"Following the success during the first half of the year, we will continue to look for opportunities to invest in marketing campaigns and our customer proposition to drive future sales growth and improve customer lifetime value.

"We will also be making significant investments in our IT systems and e-commerce platforms. Consequently EBITDA margin for the full year is expected to be around 11%."

Belfast Telegraph