Dr Martens has reported mounting profits as it looks forward to a stellar festive season.

The boot specialists recorded profit before tax up 46% year on year to £61.3m in the six months to September 30, largely driven by its direct-to-consumer division.

Dr Martens

Dr Martens sold 6.3 billion pairs of shoes in the first half

Revenues also grew 16% to £370m in the same period, with D2C representing 40% of the total – up 6% compared with the previous reporting period.

Within D2C, retail revenue recovered following store reopenings in April, up 92%, and now representing 18% of the total mix, while ecommerce was boosted by 10% over the six months.

Dr Martens chief executive Kenny Wilson told Retail Week the retailer sold 6.3 million pairs in the first half, a record for the company, up 13% year on year.

Wilson is positive the momentum will continue into the festive period.

He said: “We’re now into the busiest months of the year and the great news is there is really strong momentum for the brand. Retail is continuing to strengthen for us as a business globally; ecommerce has doubled on two years ago and we continue to see trends that are in line with that. As a consequence, we’re confident in our guidance for the full year.

“In terms of overall demand, we’re seeing the brand strengthening. Whatever happens, I don’t think that’s going to change – as we saw last year, even in full lockdown. Dr Martens still performed incredibly well. 

“With the announcement that people will be working from home, what we’d expect to see is that London will be quieter and we will see more of our sales online and in provincial cities.”

The business managed to avoid the majority of supply chain challenges facing retailers throughout the period as it built up its inventory levels during the pandemic. 

Wilson added: “We took the decision to enter the year with higher inventory levels, made possible by the continuity and carryover nature of our product and our partnership approach to supplier relationships.

”This meant that D2C availability levels remained relatively high and gross margin was not impacted, despite the supply chain disruption and global shipping delays experienced across the industry. Our Americas performance was again particularly strong, notwithstanding our wholesale business here being most impacted by these delays.

“Our strong first-half performance, combined with the continued momentum in D2C trading into the second half, gives us confidence in achieving market expectations for the full year. I remain hugely excited about the growth potential of the Dr Martens brand.”

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