• Koovs half-year losses widen to £5.7m
  • Investments in marketing and strategic objectives hit bottom line
  • But sales, website traffic and number of active customers all rise

Indian etailer Koovs has posted a widening of its half-year pre-tax losses to INR 570.6m (£5.7m) despite delivering “rapid” sales growth.

Group revenues for the six months ending September 30 soared 144% to INR 199.2m (£2m) driven by growth in sales made through Koovs.com, which almost trebled to INR 282.7m (£2.8m) during the period.

The number of active customers rose 220% to 182,000 after website traffic jumped 128% to 16.4 million visits.

But Koovs said its losses widened from INR 359.5 (£3.6m) compared with last year as marketing costs spiralled in its continued push to “build presence in the market and grow revenue”.

Koovs has launched a “major” multi-media advertising campaign this month in a bid to further raise “brand awareness”.

“We have a clear strategy and fundraising plan to scale the business and deliver continued growth”

Waheed Alli, Koovs

Back in April, Koovs warned that high marketing costs would dent its full-year profit expectations after rapid growth of the Indian ecommerce market caused those costs to increase by more than £2m.

Koovs has also invested into its strategic objectives including building its private-label offer, bringing in international brands and developing its delivery and price propositions.

The etailer has also refreshed its website and created a new customer engagement platform called Style Stories, which allows shoppers to share fashion ideas and style news.

‘Exciting’ times

Koovs chief executive Mary Turner, who was unveiled as the etailer’s boss in July and took up the role in October, said: “It is an incredibly exciting time to join Koovs, as young, fashion-conscious Indians are searching for brands that share their passion for exclusive western fashion.

“I have always described Koovs as India’s best kept secret and I am delighted to be part of the journey as we build our profile and ensure more young customers can share this secret.”

Koovs chairman Waheed Alli added: “It has been another period of exceptional sales growth for Koovs.com as young, fashion forward Indians continue to take Koovs to their hearts in increasing numbers.

“We have a clear strategy and fundraising plan to scale the business and deliver continued growth. I am delighted to welcome Mary Turner, our new CEO, to the business who brings exceptional experience, energy and enthusiasm to our team.”