Fat Face has posted a 3% rise in full-price like-for-like sales during December, driven by “particularly strong” growth in online sales.
The fashion retailer said total sales during the five weeks to January 2 jumped 8% compared with the same period last year. Ecommerce sales surpassed £9m during the month after rocketing 43%. Online revenues accounted for 21% of Fat Face’s total business during the month.
Fat Face said it also recorded its largest ever week of sales in December, as it raked in £11.2m in seven days, while EBITDA during the month reached a record £14.3m, up from £13.5m on the year.
Fat Face stuck to a full-price sales strategy amid a “highly promotional market”.
Boss Anthony Thompson said: “Our full-price strategy and multichannel focus have delivered a strong Christmas trading period. The results demonstrate the resilience of the Fat Face brand and reflect the continued investment we have been making in product, service and retail environment in our stores and online.
“Our customers also responded well to our decision not to discount before Christmas. They can trust the integrity of our prices and buy their Christmas presents with confidence that they will not be discounted while waiting to be unwrapped by their family and friends.”
Rather than participate in Black Friday promotions, Fat Face launched its ‘Thanks For Giving’ campaign, donating a percentage of profits to charities across the UK. The initiative raised £200,000.
Fat Face added that it would continue to expand its multichannel offer in 2016, with eight new stores and three relocations in the pipeline, while further investment in its online proposition is also planned.
Thompson added that the retailer considered its stock carefully and invested less in outerwear. He said: ”We did things differently to the previous year. We bought less heavily into outer and heavy gauge knitwear. We bought our stock tighter and so had less stock in the sale despite having more stores. We also left a much bigger open-to-buy [not committing to full season’s stock in advance].”
It will open its first two US stores in Portland, Maine and Lynnfield, Massachusetts early this year and begin construction of a new distribution centre at Dunsbury Hill Farm, Hampshire, which is poised to open in 2017.