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Hush grows quickly as its customers shift online

Image courtesy of Hush

Hush says it has grown quickly as shoppers have moved online to buy the ‘laidback’ womenswear that it sells.

The womenswear retailer today reports revenues of £58m (+23%) and operating profits of £11.4m (+169%) in the year to March 27 2021. Ecommerce sales accounted for 95% of its sales in a year in which its own pop-up shops and its concessions at retail partners including John Lewis were often closed in Covid-19 lockdowns. Online sales from both its own website and those of its retail partners grew by 43%.

Hush says that its customer database increased by 25% during the year, while its new customers were 54% up on the previous year. The retailer says it benefited as shoppers went online to look for more casual styles during the pandemic, with digital marketing an important customer acquisition tool. 

In the first six months of its current financial year, Hush sales grew by 20% on the previous year. 

Hush chief executive Kate Bartman says: “We’re delighted to report a record financial performance in the year to March 2021, with strong sales and profit growth despite the impact of Covid-19 on some of our sales channels. Our business has more than trebled in size over the past four years which is a testament to the strength of our brand, our high-quality products and excellent customer engagement. With this strong momentum, as well as the exciting investments we have made in our people and business, we are very excited about our long-term growth plans.

“We’re pleased to say that our momentum has continued into the current year against a challenging retail backdrop, and with our growing and loyal customer base, exciting new collections, and the strong performance of our bricks and mortar retail channels to complement our rapidly growing digital sales, we are very well positioned as we enter the Christmas trading period.”

In March 2020 Hush received the first external investment in its 18-year history from private equity specialist True Global. It has since strengthened its team, including appointing Susanne Given as its first non-executive chair and promoting Kate Bartman to chief executive from commercial director. 

It has also focused on sustainability, increasing the share of ‘lower impact’ fashion to more than 60% of its collection while launching a take back service with second-hand online platform Thrift+.

Hush, a Top350 retailer in RXUK Top500 research, was founded in 2003 by Mandy Watkins and Rupert Youngman to take a digital-first approach to sales of its laidback womenswear. 

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