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Fifty Shades of Grey factor helps Lovehoney profits treble

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Lovehoney today unveiled significantly higher profits and turnover thanks to the success of its Fifty Shades of Grey range of sex toys. Christmas sales grew by 45% on the same time last year – evidence, it said, of a gathering of pace in the switch from the high street to online.

The company said profits after tax grew threefold in the year to March 31 to £2.25m, on turnover up by £8m, or more than 50%, to £23.7m, driven by UK and international demand for products including those inspired by EL James’ trilogy.

Staff numbers have more than doubled to 120 in the last two years, while the company launched into America and Australia in the summer and says it will launch sites in France and Germany in the next few months.

“As the switch from the high street to online gathers pace,” said Lovehoney co-founder Neal Slateford (pictured, right), “we have been very effective in becoming the leading online destination for sexual happiness shoppers. They know they are going to get the product they want, at a good price, delivered quickly and discreetly. We have plans to take this offering to a large number of international markets, starting with France and Germany.”

The company predicts that growth will continue in its current financial year: sales rose by 45% over Christmas, when Lovehoney had its busiest month for 11 years.

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