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ScS reports fast growth in online sales

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ScS today unveiled first-half online sales of £4.3m, 17.3% up on the same time last year following continued development of its ecommerce platform.

The sofas and carpets retailer, a Top250 company in the IRUK Top500, reported gross sales of £145.4m in the half-year to January 23, 10.2% up from £132.0m at the same time last year, while revenue of £137.7m – excluding charges relating to interest-free credit sales – was up 10.2% from £125.0m last time. Pre-tax losses of £3.4m narrowed from £13.1m last time.

The company said its strong growth was down to factors including fast online growth as well as higher sales of upholstered furniture and flooring, and growing sales from House of Fraser concession stores. ScS continued to develop its ecommerce platform with a focus on user experience, visual merchandising and search engine optimisation. The site is also responsive on mobile devices. During the period, website hits rose by 7.7%, conversion by 6.5% and online orders rose by 12.3%.

The second half of the year, including the May bank holiday is historically the better-performing period for the business, which said first-half losses of £3.4m were in line with expectations. The second half is expected to be “modestly ahead” of expectations.

“We are delighted to be reporting significant growth across all areas of the group in the first half of the current financial year,” said chief executive David Knight. “These results demonstrate the progress that has been made in developing ScS into a strong national brand with three very clear retail offers – upholstered furniture, flooring and our House of Fraser concessions, all supported by an improving online platform.

“Our sales order intake is the highest ever achieved in this period and is up 9.1% on a like-for-like basis, a strong performance against tough prior year like-for-like comparatives (up 7.8%).”Looking to the future, we are excited about our growth prospects, including the continued growth from our concession agreement with House of Fraser, our flooring offering and online proposition.”

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