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Full-price sales drive growth at Toast

Toast has reported a 17% jump in full-year sales, following a review of the brand and a renewed focus on full-price sales.

The womenswear and homeware business had an 81% increase in full-price sales for the autumn 16 season, compared with 2015. Dresses and knitwear were the bestselling items and trousers became a bigger contributor to the overall sales mix.

The firm grew sales across all channels. Online sales were up 20% year on year, and in-store sales grew by 14%.

During the year, the business opened a new store in Cambridge, taking the total to 12 across the UK. It also has concessions in 14 John Lewis stores.

Toast chief executive Suzie de Rohan Willner attributed the improvement in performance to an increase in demand and higher average order value.

“Our full-year results are very strong despite challenging UK trading conditions. Revenue has increased against last year as we have refined our product range to create a collection that is increasingly appealing to our growing customer base.”

De Rohan Willner joined Toast in November 2015, taking over the day-to-day operations from founders wife and husband Jessica and Jamie Seaton. Since joining, she has revamped Toast’s womenswear offer and reviewed the pricing architecture as part of a new growth strategy.

Toast will open stores in further locations in the UK and plans to open stores internationally in the future.

Toast is part of the French Connection Group portfolio. French Connection’s group revenues fell 6.7% to £153.2m for the year ending 31 January and the group made an underlying operating loss of £3.7m, compared with £4.7m in 2016.


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