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Author: Alan LittleDate: 2020-10-16

ASOS (ASC) sales rise but shares close 3.75% lower

ASOS (ASC) shares closed 3.75% lower on Thursday, even though the British online fashion retailer posted £3.26bn in sales and a £142.1m pre-tax profit for the full fiscal year.

ASOS has benefited from a surge in digital orders since the pandemic and has added 3.1 million new active customers to its 23.4 million total client base during the last 12 months.

While ASOS is particularly popular in the UK, the company saw its biggest gains in the EU where sales soared 22%, while also continuing its growth in the US and the rest of the world.

CEO Nick Beighton said that he was “proud” of how the company met the challenges associated with COVID-19 “head on”.

He added: “As well as protecting staff, suppliers and customers, we’ve driven efficiency and have emerged a stronger, more resilient and agile business whilst delivering strong profit and cash generation.”

The profit-before-tax figure of £142.1m was in line with the pre-report forecast of £130m to £150m, which pleased investors, but a cautious short-term outlook took the shine off the latest robust numbers.

ASOS said that the pandemic could mean that its customer base, which skews younger, may have less disposable income to buy clothes in the coming months.

ASC shares dipped into the red after the first bell on the London Stock Exchange on Thursday and eased steadily lower during the session.

ASOS eventually finished 3.75% down at a 4,644 GBX share price but remains up around 45% for the year-to-date.

Analysts at The Motley Fool said that ASOS delivered an impressive report as earnings per share quadrupled and advised investors to buy into ASC for the “lockdown and beyond”.


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