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Joules beats 'tough trading' with revenue rise

British lifestyle brand Joules has reported a 1.3% year-on-year rise in revenues to £111.6m in the 26 weeks to 24 November, despite the “continued challenging trading environment”. 

The results are stated on a comparative basis to include the Black Friday trading period in both years. 

Retail revenue increased by 3.1% in the same comparative period, and gross margin improved as a result of a ”disciplined approach to promotional activity”. Joules said this revenue performance was driven by “strong ecommerce growth, supported by its ’distinctive’ product offer, enhancements to the customer proposition and continued growth in its active customer base”.

Wholesale revenue fell by 3.8% following the conversion of some larger accounts to retail concessions last year and the “continued challenging UK trading environment”.

Across “other” channels, which includes ecommerce and store channels, revenue rose by 9.4% in the comparative period to 24 November. On the back of this performance, the group is opening four new stores before Christmas in undisclosed locations. 

Nick Jones, chief executive officer, commented: “Joules has delivered further profitable growth during the period despite the continued challenging trading environment. This performance again reflects the appeal of the brand, the flexibility of our ‘Total Retail’ model and the hard work and skill of our team who have not only helped deliver growth in this tougher climate but have also launched innovative new initiatives such as ‘Friends of Joules’ [the online marketplace for small businesses] that create future growth opportunities.

”Since joining the business in September, I have been struck by the exceptional strength of the Joules brand as well as its clear potential for growth across channels, markets and product categories. We continue to invest in our proposition to meet changing customer expectations in a scalable and profitable way and, with positive momentum across both digital and physical channels, we are well placed as we enter the important Christmas trading period.”

The group will announce its interim results on Tuesday 21 January 2020.

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