Fortnum & Mason pointed to a strong multichannel performance as it reported double-digit sales growth for the seventh year in a row.
Online sales rose by 13% compared to the previous year, while overall sales of £138m were 12% ahead. Profits were up by 26% on last time. The retailer, ranked Top250 in IRUK Top500 research, said it had looked to global customer needs and tastes amid “the most challenging domestic retail backdrop in years”.
Recent store openings paid dividends: like-for-like sales at its St Pancras International shop were 15% up, while those at its flagship store were 6% up. A new flagship store in Hong Kong – its first standalone shop in Asia – was announced in April and is set to open before Christmas.
Online sales were delivered to more than 120 countries around the world. Sales in Hong Kong (+16%) and Japan (+28%) were well ahead.
Ewan Venters, chief executive of Fortnum & Mason, said: “We are very pleased to report another year of strong growth across our business, particularly within the context of the significant challenges fig the retail sector. Our reputation for delighting our customers around the world with the finest products and exceptional service drives us all to keep innovating and searching from eh best partners and suppliers.
“I am delighted that before Christmas we will be trading from our first standalone store in Asia as we open a shop and restaurant in Hong Kong and we are now looking forward to a busy and successful Christmas. We believe the particular brand of festive cheer that Fortnum’s strives to deliver will be a welcome relief in these uncertain times.”
The retailer now runs 10 restaurants across its stores, and said that its destination restaurant, 45 Jermyn St, saw revenues rise by 14% on the previous year.
Kate Hobhouse, chairman of Fortnum’s, said: “Ours is a business that celebrates the very best, be it food, drink, joy-giving gifts or indeed experiences. We are a traditional British business with a truly global outlook, and I am proud that people’s appetite for our brand is increasing around the world.
“We continue to serve our customers both at home and abroad, in person and across our digital platforms, and I am excited to see how the business can build on its recent success in the year ahead.”
Image courtesy of Fortnum & Mason