recorded a strong increase in its full-year profits and sales, but chief executive John Roberts says the retailer “must cement that change” driven by online shopping habits amid the coronavirus pandemic.’s full-year profits soared 54% to £19.6m to the year ending March 31, as more shoppers went online during lockdown. 

The electricals retailer also posted a strong sales growth, up 16% to £1.04bn, as customers invested in fridges, freezers and home working equipment to prepare for the uncertainty ahead.

UK revenue grew 20% to £902m, while European revenue dropped 4.6% due to the closure of the retailer’s Dutch website. 

AO launched a review of its European business at the start of the financial year, and has chosen to focus its efforts on its German arm where it expects to achieve positive EBITDA on revenue of approximately €250m (£226m).

The retailer had a consistent NPS score of 80 throughout the period in both the UK and Germany.

Roberts said: “I’m pleased that we have made substantial progress, closing the year in good shape after getting AO fit and focused on the future. Covid-19 has accelerated a shift in customer behaviour towards online shopping and we now need to cement that change. 

“In short, we must drive forward so those customers never look back. AO now has the opportunity to become a new habit that lasts – by delivering brilliant service for customers. In other words, turning those lockdown learnings into lifelong change.”