Asos sales slow as strong pound dampens international growth

 
Kasmira Jefford
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Asos said sales picked up at the end of November
Online fashion retailer Asos suffered a slowdown in sales in the first quarter of the year, after the strong pound dented its international business.
The company said its total retail sales rose eight per cent to £246m in the three months to 30 November, down from a 15 per cent rise the previous quarter.
UK retail sales increased by 24 per cent, but international sales fell by two per cent, and Asos chief executive Nick Robertson warned that trading conditions remained “challenging”.
Asos has had a tough year riddled with profit warnings, a fire at its main warehouse in Barnsley and a slowdown in international sales.
The strength of sterling against other currencies has forced Asos to cut the price of its clothing overseas to win back customers.
Robertson said September and October had been difficult as it installed a new automation system at its warehouse in Barnsley in time for the peak trading seasons.
However, he added that sales had since picked up, with the company enjoying its biggest ever trading week over the Black Friday weekend in November, when hundreds of online firms offered discounts.
Shares, which have fallen 64 per cent in the year-to-date, closed up 1.77 per cent last night.

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