Joules posts strong revenue growth as it makes contingency plans ahead of Brexit
Joules has seen its first half group revenue climb by 17.6% to £113.1 million despite “challenging” trading conditions.
In the 26 weeks to 25 November, retail revenue increased by 21.2% to £79.9 million as the lifestyle clothing retailer benefited from a particularly good performance in online sales which now account for nearly 50% of all retail trading.
Meanwhile, wholesale sales were up 8% in the period due to Joules achieving strong growth in its markets in the UK, US and Germany.
Colin Porter, Joules chief executive, said: “I am delighted to update on what has been another period of strong performance for Joules despite challenging trading conditions. This performance, which is ahead of our initial expectations for the period, is testament to the strength of the Joules brand, the engagement of our loyal customers with our product collections, and our fantastic teams.”
As a result of the strong sales performance, Joules now anticipates that its underlying pre-tax profit for the period will be “slightly ahead” of initial expectations.
Porter added: “In the UK, our ‘total retail’ cross-channel model, underpinned by investment in infrastructure, has proven to be well suited to today’s rapidly changing consumer shopping behaviours. In addition, our international wholesale business continues to make excellent progress by both increasing sales to existing accounts and developing new accounts.”
Joules also said that it expects trading conditions in the UK to remain challenging over the near term and that it has put in place contingency plans to mitigate any disruption in the event of a hard Brexit. The plans include establishing an EU based third party distribution facility, scheduling earlier inbound product deliveries for its Spring/Summer 2019 range, preparing for a potential increase in administrative activities, and hedging US dollar requirements more than 12 months forward.
However, the company said it is confident that it will achieve a full year pre-tax profit in line with expectations.
Porter said: “We have an outstanding brand, good momentum and a growing customer base and we look forward to the second half of the financial year with confidence.”
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