Clipper reports strong trading as shoppers switch to online during the pandemic

Clipper Logistics, which distributes goods for John Lewis, Marks & Spencer, Asda and Morrisons, has reported a strong performance over the past year, boosted by the structural shift to online shopping during the pandemic.

Clipper said it is very well positioned to further accelerate growth by capitalising on the structural shift to online

Earnings are expected to be around £32m for the year to April 30, an underlying increase of 53 per cent on the £21m achieved in the previous financial year.

Revenues are expected to reach £698m, 39 per cent ahead of the prior year driven by a combination of organic growth and new contract wins.

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Steve Parkin, Leeds-based Clipper s executive chairman, said: “2021 has been an unprecedented year which demonstrates again the strength and resilience of our model and the ability of Clipper to deliver a strong performance in the rapidly changing e-commerce and retail environment.

"We have enabled retailers to overcome challenges and adapt quickly by rethinking the way to operate both their online and bricks and mortar channels.

"Additionally, we have entered the life sciences sector in support of the NHS and care sectors, providing fulfilment of vital supplies."

Mr Parkin said the uniqueness of Clipper's full end to end solutions, combined with its agile and able culture, has accelerated contract wins in the UK and Mainland Europe, which he said was a testament to the group's expertise and the execution of its strategy.

"We are very well positioned to further accelerate growth by capitalising on the structural shift to online and to position Clipper as a global e-commerce and retail logistics enabler," he added.

"As such, we are pleased to upgrade our guidance for both 2022 and 2023.

“Our key priority throughout this year has been to ensure the safety of our staff and their families and on behalf of the board I would like to thank all our colleagues across the group for their commitment and dedication to deliver a very strong year.”

Analyst Peter Ashworth at Shore Capital said: "In our view this trading update is another outstanding market update from Clipper.

"The statement demonstrates the significant growth the group has been able to deliver, both organic and with the contribution of significant contract wins/renewals reflecting the outstanding capability of the group, doing difficult things at scale, at pace repeatedly."