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Business

Published on January 19th, 2021 | by The GC Team

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AO enjoys “strongest ever” peak trading period

Online electricals retailer AO World today said it is looking forward to the last quarter and the next financial year with confidence as it provided a trading update for its third quarter of the year, the three months ended 31 December 2020.

The company said the structural shift to online is cemented in consumers’ minds and the significant increase in demand for AO products and services since the start of the pandemic has continued throughout the third quarter as the business experienced its strongest ever peak trading period over the Black Friday period and in the run up to Christmas. 

In the three months to 31 December the firm reported year-on-year UK revenue growth of 67.2% to £457.3m and 77.4% to €73.6m in Germany.

AO Founder and Chief Executive John Roberts cautioned on significantly higher costs incurred as the business negotiates some of the operational challenges of working in a Covid-compliant environment, particularly in the reverse supply chain, but was otherwise upbeat: “I believe we’ve seen ten years of change in ten months, and experienced our strongest ever peak trading period.

“We backed ourselves by investing early in warehouses, vehicles, stock and people. This not only set us up to satisfy customer demand for electricals for the current crisis but also for the longer term, as the structural shift to online becomes a permanent feature of the market in the UK and Germany. One of our biggest achievements this period is to have our German business profitable throughout Q3.

“Our confidence in those investments has been rewarded by these exceptional levels of sales. We’ve seen how the short-term costs translate into a fantastic opportunity to drive lifetime value for millions more customers. We’re delighted to have earned their trust after their first purchase and their first experience of the AO Way.”

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