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Footasylum sales soar as ‘resilient’ consumers defy market

Footwear retailer Footasylum has announced a 33% jump in revenue to £194.8m for the year to 24 February 2018, thanks to a “comparatively resilient” youthful consumer.

In its first set of results since the retailer’s IPO last November, Footasylum revealed EBITDA was up 12% to £12.5m for the period.

However, profit before tax plummeted by 76% to £1.9m, down from £8.1m the previous year, owing to exceptional items of £6m as it invested in new stores, head office space and warehouse expansion. Adjusted profit before tax rose by 4% to £8.4m.

During the year Footasylum opened 10 new stores, and invested further in its online platform, which now accounts for 30% of all sales. It also doubled its distribution space, opening a second warehouse, and invested in an in-house studio for its Manchester office.

Chief executive Claire Nesbitt said: “We have delivered broad-based growth across all of our channels and product categories, while also continuing to invest in our infrastructure and talent in order to support further long-term expansion.”

However she also cautioned that tough times lie ahead for retailers. “While our core target market of the 16 to 24-year-old consumer has proved to be comparatively resilient in a downturn, our trading since the beginning of the new financial year has undoubtedly been impacted by the widely documented weak consumer sentiment on the high street.” 

Nesbitt highlighted Footasylum’s plans to upsize stores and invest in digital ahead of the peak trading period, but warned this increase in capital expenditure would result in more modest EBITDA growth for 2019 compared to 2018.

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