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ASOS expands abroad as UK sales growth slows

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Online fashion company ASOS has opened three new international websites as it continues to look overseas for high growth in the face of slow UK consumer spending.

While UK sales rose by just 1% to £44.0m in the first quarter of its financial year, ASOS turned in growth of 141% to £62.5m from its international websites in the same period. Overall, it said today, its retail sales grew by 53% in the three months to September 30, to £106.6m from £69.6m at the same time last year. International sales now make up 59% of its total sales, and new sites in Australia, Spain and Italy launched over the last three months, taking the total number of ASOS sites to seven.

In a trading statement published today, the company showed the latest figures took total sales for the first half of its financial year, to September 30, to £210.9m, a rise of 60%. UK sales for the half year were up by 8% at £88.7m.

Sales in the US rose by 124% in its latest quarter to £8.4m, while EU sales were up by 65% at £22.96m and rest of the world sales rose 272% to £31.2m.

Chief executive Nick Robertson said the international business had “more than compensated for the economic challenges facing our UK customer base.” He added: “With costs and stock tightly managed and retail marging ahead of prior year, we are confident of achieving results in line with market expectations.”

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