Asos bounces back from difficult year
Improved product choice and stock availability and record Black Friday sales helped Asos deliver better-than-expected sales in the last quarter.
The company posted a 20 per cent rise on group sales to £1.1 billion ($21.0 billion) in the four months to December 31.
Sales in the UK climbed 18 per cent in the period, up 21 per cent in the rest of Europe and 23 per cent in the US and the rest of the world.
“The actions we took to rebuild customer momentum during the peak trading period delivered a better than expected sales performance largely driven by the Black Friday weekend,” said Asos chief executive Nick Beighton.
“We made good progress against the clear priorities we set out for FY20 including improvements in product choice and stock availability; presentation and social media engagement; and optimising customer acquisition and reactivation.”
Beighton said these actions alongside their increased capacity and more robust operational footprint ensured they were able to participate fully in the key period for customer acquisition.
“Our activity clearly resonated with consumers and as a result we saw the benefits when compared with the prior year in sales growth, customer acquisition and total active customers,” he said.
Asos’ performance this year is a stark contrast to its performance over a year ago when it announced poor sales over Black Friday resulting in lower sales growth and profit margins halving, forcing the company to issue a profit warning.
The online retailer issued another profit warning in July, which Asos blamed on IT chaos in its overseas warehouses.
“As we said in October, the focus for this year is to further enhance our capabilities and leverage the investments we have made,” Beighton said.
“It is still early in the year and much remains to be done, but we are encouraged by the progress we have made so far,” he said. “We remain confident in our ability to capture the substantial opportunity ahead of us.”
The company said its plans and outlook for the year remain unchanged as it continues to focus on the actions required to support long-term growth.