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Boohoo sales rocket, as shoppers undeterred by supply chain allegations

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Online fashion giant Boohoo continues to reap the rewards of the lockdown, with sales in the six months to August up more than £250m to £817m. Pre-tax profits increased by 51% to £68m.

The Boohoo Group, which owns Boohoo, Pretty Little Thing, Nasty Gal, Coast and Karen Millen and which purchased Oasis and Warehouse earlier this year has seen strong performance across the half-year across all its brands.

It is also expecting to see the strong performance continue into 2021, predicting revenues for the year to 28 February next year to increase between 28 and 32%.

It is also planning to invest more in IT, expecting to sink up to £100m of capital into automation at its Sheffield and Burnley sites and other significant IT projects.

The company’s customers continue to shop avidly from the retailer despite high-profile criticism of the brands working conditions within its supply chain, which hit the headlines again this week when an independent review that it commissioned into its business in response to allegations concluded that reports of poor working conditions and low pay in Leicester factories supplying the group were “not merely well-founded but substantially true”.

Chief executive John Lyttle told investors: “Our business, along with many others, has faced some of its most challenging times in recent months: the onset of the pandemic meant we had to adapt our operations with nearly all office-based colleagues working from home; we introduced new ways of working safely in our distribution centres; and we have comprehensively investigated reports on concerning and unacceptable working practices in our Leicester supply chain.”

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