Lush is a global cosmetics manufacturer and retailer famous for its commitment to animal welfare and environmental values. Its handmade approach gives it a unique niche in the highly competitive cosmetics sector in which sustainability has become an increasingly important factor.

As part of its pioneering approach to cosmetics, it is pursuing a digitally led strategy to connect with customers.

With the transition to online shopping accelerating during the pandemic, Lush relaunched its website in partnership with Saleor in June 2021. This has allowed it to introduce a 24 hour live-chat function, improved search optimisation and provide exclusive information on new products.

It has also rolled out its augmented reality product identification tool, known as Lush Lens, to its iOS and Android apps.

Lush has invested in service-oriented architecture to speed up the implementation of new features and releases and continues to invest in technology for its remodelled and relocated stores where the focus is on creating a shopping experience worth coming to the high street for. 

The retailer operates just over 100 stores in the UK, but globally there are around 800. Half of its international stores are operated under licence or in joint ventures.

Impacted by the pandemic, group sales have fallen back over both the 2019 (to end-June 2020) and 2020 (to end-June 2021) financial years. UK sales came in at just over £122m in FY2020, but group sales stood at £409m and total brand turnover – including sales made through joint ventures and licensees – were £780m. Companies House filings for FY2021 are expected around April 2023.

In December 2021, Lush sold a 19.8% stake in the business to investment firm Silverwood. The total consideration for the purchase of Lush sale shares sat at around £216.8m. Silverwood said it was well placed for “generating new ideas to invigorate and strengthen” the retailer.

Innovation rating: 3.5

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