Joules ‘encouraged’ by first quarter performance
Joules has said its group revenue came in ahead of expectations in the 13 weeks to 30 August despite the challenges presented by the Covid-19 pandemic.
In a trading statement ahead of its AGM, the lifestyle clothing retailer said group revenue reached £39.6 million although this was 18% down on the same period last year due to store closures during lockdown.
Joules said its active customer base continued to grow driven by new customers both online and in-store. Retail revenue declined by 5%, although retail sales through Joules owned retail channels increased by 1.5%. Online sales, including third parties, climbed by 45% due to increased customer traffic to the the retailer’s websites and improved conversion rates.
Meanwhile, sales in Joules’ retail stores fell by 49% but the retailer said they have performed well since reopening after lockdown. It attributed this to a good balance of geographic locations, pent-up customer demand and a strong promotional offer to help drive footfall.
Wholesale sales were also down, dropping by 59%, but were in line with expectations.
Nick Jones, chief executive of Joules, said: “We are encouraged by the group’s performance in the first quarter of the financial year with sales ahead of our expectations. This is testament to the flexibility of the Joules model and the increasing strength, relevance and awareness of the Joules brand.
“As with all consumer-facing businesses we face challenging trading conditions and unprecedented levels of uncertainty over the coming months and into the peak Christmas trading season. Against this backdrop we remain cautious on the future trading outlook and will continue to tightly manage costs and conserve cash. Notwithstanding this, we remain confident that – underpinned by the strength and relevance of our brand – Joules remains well positioned to continue to adapt to changing consumer behaviours.”
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