UK's ASOS posts big jump in Christmas salesTuesday 14 January 2014 07.58
British online fashion retailer ASOS posted a big jump in sales in the run-up to Christmas, putting it firmly among the sector's major winners in the key festive trading season.
ASOS, whose shares have nearly trebled over the last year, said its retail sales rose 38% to £335.7m sterling in the four months to December 31 - the first four months of its 2013-14 fiscal year.
That compares with a rise of 47% in the fourth quarter of the 2012-13 year and analysts' consensus forecast for growth of 36%.
The firm said it had 7.9 million active customers as of December 31, up 41% year-on-year.
ASOS, founded in 2000 by former advertising executive Nick Robertson, the current CEO, has been the big success story in UK retailing in recent years. Its fast-changing fashions have been snapped up by internet-savvy 20-somethings and attracting fans including US First Lady MichelleObama and singer Rita Ora.
Its shares have soared 164% over the last year, giving it a market value of £5.8 billion - the equivalent of six Debenhams and only £2 billion less than Marks & Spencer, Britain's biggest clothing retailer which is 130 years old.
ASOS' UK sales jumped 37% to £133.7m, with international sales up 38% to £202m, with sales in Europe particularly strong with growth of 69%.
"These results were driven by significant improvements to our customer proposition, including better delivery options, additional payment methods and the roll out of our premier service in key international markets," CEO Nick Robertson said.