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Asos accelerates Russian launch

Asos has brought forward its Russian launch to tomorrow (May 1) after international sales surged in its second half.  

In the six months to February 28 group revenues rose 33% to £359.7m as profit before tax and exceptional items rose 11% to £25.7m. Retail sales grew by 34% to £352.3m.

The etailer said womenswear performed “strongly” during the period while menswear also continued to grow well, accounting for 26% of total sales.

International retail sales rose 39% to £214.7m and now account for 61% of total retail sales.

The US was the fastest growing territory with retail sales up 54%. Sales across Asos’ UK arm rose 26% to £137.6m driven by a particularly strong performance during the peak December trading period.

The etailer now has six million active customers worldwide.

The launch of the Russian site had previously been scheduled for October, but has been brought forward after Asos overcame distribution issues.

Russia will be served from the Barnsley distribution centre rather than having its own set up as the etailer will do in China, which is still on schedule to debut in October.

Chief executive Nick Robertson said: “We have continued to invest in all aspects of the customer offer to maximise the growth opportunity; investing in product price and quality, enhanced delivery options, a broad range of marketing initiatives, focused local teams in international territories and continual improvement to our technology platforms, most notably mobile and international sites.”

Robertson added: “Momentum is strong, and we remain positive in our outlook for 2012/13 as we continue our journey to becoming the number one online fashion destination for twenty-somethings globally.

“Our international roll out continues and our £1 billion sales ambition for the group is firmly in our sights.”

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