Asos attracts a billion website visits

'‹Online fashion firm Asos has posted a 10'‹ per cent'‹ rise in half year profits as it notched up its highest number of website visits - at over a billion over the half year.

Asos aims to be the world's number one destination for fashion-loving 20-somethings

The firm said work is currently underway ​at its Barnsley warehouse ​to increase the stockholding capacity through the construction of an additional mezzanine.

This will increase capacity by a further 10​ per cent​ to 22 million units and is scheduled to complete by the end of April.

Sign up to our Business newsletter

Sign up to our Business newsletter

Pre-tax profits jumped to £29.9​m in the six months to February 28.​ ​

​UK retail sales ​rose​ 22​ per cent​ to £414.5​m, while international sales ​increased 28​ per cent​ to £716.8​m on a constant currency basis.

Chief executive Nick Beighton said: "These results show strong trading at the same time as we are making substantial investment in our future.

"Alongside our investment in our people and our technology, we are accelerating investment in our distribution and logistics, laying the foundation for £4​bn of net sales."

The group kept its guidance for full-year sales growth of between 25 and 30​ per cent​. ​

The firm ​raised its spending guidance for the full-year for the second time in less than three months​ and now​ expect​s​ capital expenditure of between £230​m and £250​m.

​Analysts said the investment plans highlighted the costs faced by online retailers.

Russ Mould, investment director at AJ Bell, said: "This offers a reminder that, although not burdened with the same level of overheads as traditional retailers, it does incur material costs on items like distribution and logistics."

Asos has spent just over £95​m so far this year, with around half on technology and transformation programmes and the remainder on infrastructure across its supply chain and head office.

​The firm said the heavy investment ​i​s bearing fruit, with shopper visits to its site up by 25​ per cent​ year-on-year, average orders up 8​ per cent​ and a 2​ per cent​ rise in the average basket size.

The group ​said​ it ​i​s confident that by concentrating on successfully executing ​its investments, ​it is positioning Asos to be the world's number one destination for fashion-loving 20-somethings.