Next outperforms rivals

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​Next, Britain’s second biggest clothing retailer by sales value, posted a 19.3 per cent rise in first half profit, with growth at both its stores and home shopping business.

The group, which trades from over 500 stores in Britain and Ireland, about 200 stores overseas, and through its Directory internet and catalogue business, said on Thursday it made a pre​-​tax profit of ​£​324.2​m in the six months to July, up from ​£​271.8​m made in the same period last year.

Next is outperforming rivals, such as Marks & Spencer, because of a strong online offer, a constant stream of new store openings and diversification into new product areas, such as homewares, as well as new overseas markets.

It also reiterated the guidance it issued in July.​