Online fashion retailer Asos has revealed a record year for sales and earnings, with pre-tax profits rocketing 93 per cent to £14m in the year to March 31.
Total sales doubled to £165.4m in the period. The retailer said it has made a “positive start” to the current year, with sales in the 13 weeks to June 26 jumping 52 per cent. The board expects another year of “strong” growth.
In the 12 month period, gross margin slid 130 basis points due to an “enhanced branded mix and promotional investment”.
International sales soared 303 per cent to £32.2m. Asos said overseas expansion represents its “largest growth opportunity”. During the year, the retailer increased the number of countries it ships to from 34 to 58. Its top five performing countries outside the UK were Ireland, Denmark, Sweden, France and the US.
By the end of May the number of active customers grew 68 per cent year-on-year to 1.2 million.
Chief executive Nick Robertson said that while there is “now some evidence to suggest that the rate of growth in online sales has begun to moderate”, Asos remains “committed to winning the online fashion race”.
He said: “We are firmly established as the UK’s premier online fashion business and I remain positive about the outlook for Asos. It is clear that the structural shift to online continues and I believe that Asos is ideally placed to exploit it. I expect our international business to grow substantially in the years to come.”
In September last year the retailer launched Asos Outlet, a dedicated shop within Asos selling separately sourced last season’s brands at up to 70 per cent off. In February it launched Designer Brands at Asos and childrenswear brand Litttle Asos.
Chairman Lord Alli said the “outlook remains uncertain” so Asos has been “more conservative” in its planning for the next financial year.