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Moss Bros says results of infrastructure investment are being seen in rising ecommerce sales

Moss Bros sees rise in ecommerce and mobile sales

Moss Bros today said that ecommerce sales rose by 9.7% in the opening quarter of its financial year. Online transactions accounted for 10.7% of total sales in the period, thanks to investment in infrastructure.

The formalwear hire and retail business, a Top100 retailer in IRUK Top500 research, said in a trading statement issued ahead of its annual general meeting today, that both conversion rates and average order values rose in the 15 weeks to May 14.

Total sales rose by 3.3% over the same period. Like-for-like (LFL) sales, a measure that strips out the effect of store openings and closure, were up by 5% on last time: LFL retail sales, including ecommerce, were up by 5.1% while LFL hire sales were up by 4.7%.

“We are pleased with our progress,” said chief executive Brian Brick. “Retail sales and margins have shown further improvement, boosted by the ongoing improvement in our customer offer and the improvement in our store and online environments.

“The strength of our core offer meant that we were able to trade through the period without running a mid-season sales, which significantly enhanced gross margins in the period. Hire sales continue to show improvement and ecommerce sales in the first 15 weeks of the year have also grown, reflecting our investment in systems and infrastructure.”

The latest figures follow a year of fast growth at Moss Bross. It reported in April that ecommerce sales grew by 36.3% in the year to January 30, reflecting progress in its journey to become a multichannel retailer. During that year, more than a third (37%) of online sales took place via smartphones and tablet computers.

Stores are an important part of the multichannel experience and today’s statement showed that, following further refits during the first quarter of the year, 85 out of 124 stores are now in a new format, and that those stores are trading ahead of non-refitted stores.

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