Stamps and collectibles specialist Stanley Gibbons posted record results yesterday after seeing a 72 per cent jump in sales achieved over the internet.
The business, which was founded in 1856 and has its main outlet on the Strand in London, currently generates one-eighth of revenues from websites but said it expects the internet to become its main sales channel.
Buoyed by demand for Royal Wedding memorabilia and closer ties with stamp enthusiasts in China, the company’s sales rose by 35 per cent to £35.7m in 2011 while pre-tax profits lifted by 17 per cent to £5.2m.
Chairman Martin Bralsford said the record year and strong start to 2012, with its order book at a record high, reflected a strong market for rare collectibles and the internet.
He added: “There is evidence of a substantial shift in clients’ behaviour away from traditional dealing and mail order to the internet and auction channels. Consequently, we have invested more group resources in these services.”
The £4.3m online sales follow a redesign of its website in May. Hong Kong and China brought in sales of £1m last year. The group expects to benefit from the sale of commemorative items related to the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee and the Olympic Games during 2012.