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Asos outperforms the market

Asos appeals to fashion conscious 20-somethings
Asos appeals to fashion conscious 20-somethings
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​Asos has ​reported a double​ ​digit ​leap​ in sales, but ​said that its full​ ​year growth ​is likely ​to ​be at the lower end of market expectations.

The online fashion retailer​, whose high-profile fans include singer Rita Ora and ​former ​US First Lady Michelle Obama, ​said its group revenues ​rose 22​ per cent​ to £82​4​​m in the four months to June 30.

T​he increase in sales comes at a time when​ the company is rapidly expanding its main warehouse in Barnsley, which is the town’s biggest private sector employer with around 4,000 people working at the site.

The company said work is continuing at the warehouse to increase its stockholding capacity through the construction of an additional mezzanine, which will increase capacity by a further 10 per cent and is near to completion.

The construction is part of a £13m investment in the site which will also deliver upgrades to the restaurant, locker rooms, relaxation spaces, the introduction of a well-being centre, as well a new office space and additional car parking provision.

The site has increased the minimum wage to the UK Living Wage Foundation rate of £8.75 for all workers after three months service and intends to create 500 fixed term contracts around Christmas. It has also maintained 60 warehousing apprentices through its relationship with Barnsley College.

Asos said its ​UK retail sales ​rose 23​ per cent​ to £288​m, while sales in the EU rose 31​ per cent​ to £257​m.

In the US, sales increased 15​ per cent​ to £108​m.

Asos ​said it ​expects its ​pre-tax ​profit to be in line with consensus forecasts for the year.

While A​sos​ and online ​rival​ Boohoo continue to report robust sales growth, traditional bricks and mortar clothing retailers like Marks & Spencer, Debenhams and House of Fraser are struggling and closing stores.

​Asos c​hief executive Nick Beighton said: "I am pleased with the way the business has traded over the last four months and we are on track with our plans for the year.

"We delivered good sales growth, particularly in the UK, better-than-planned gross margin alongside significant progress on our infrastructure investments."

The tr​​ading update comes ​days ​after Asos announced that Adam Crozier, the former boss of ITV and Royal Mail, would become its chairman.

He is also chairman at Whitbread, the firm behind Costa Coffee and Premier Inn.

Mr Crozier will succeed Brian McBride when he steps down on November 29 after six years heading the board.