Online fashion retailer Asos has cemented its position as a lockdown winner after posting surging profits and sales for its full year.
Pre-tax profits jumped by more than 300pc to £142m for the year to the end of August on revenues of £3.26bn, an increase of nearly a fifth on the previous 12 months.
The fast fashion business said it saw strong demand during the pandemic and forecast further improvement in the current financial year.
Popular with shoppers in their twenties, Asos was boosted by bored millennials buying clothes online, despite having their social lives restricted due to the crisis.
The group said it had made a “solid” start to the new financial year but cautioned on the outlook for consumer demand whilst the economic prospects and lifestyles of 20-somethings remain disrupted.
Chief executive Nick Beighton said: “After a record first half which saw us make progress in addressing the performance issues of the previous financial year, the second half will always be defined by our response to Covid-19.
“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.”
In August, Asos demanded greater transparency from the brands whose clothes it stocks in the wake of a “sweatshop” scandal that engulfed the fashion industry during the summer.
The fast fashion retailer is asking its partners for a pledge to make their manufacturing sites public, to ensure they know who all their suppliers are and share details of any supply chain risks with Asos.
Shares fell 5.7pc in early trading to £50.70 but remain considerably higher than their £33 value at the start of the year.