AO World world shares jump as sales heat up

Emma Haslett
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A woman walks past a wall of washing mac
The white goods retailer said revenues had grown (Source: Getty)

AO World became the FTSE 250's highest riser this morning after it posted figures showing sales had leaped in the first quarter.

The figures

In a statement posted ahead of its annual general meeting today, online white goods retailer AO World said AO branded UK sales had risen 29 per cent in the three months between 1 April and 30 June, pushing up UK revenues by 25 per cent.

The company added European progress was "pleasing", with revenue in euros rising 101 per cent year on year.

No wonder shares were up 8.2 per cent at 145.5p in early trading.

Why it's interesting

Online retailers haven't all had an easy ride lately (cf. Asos), but it looks like AO World's decision to expand into Europe has gone pleasingly, as chairman Richard Rose put it.

Presumably, the fact the euro has gained close to 10 per cent against the pound since the Brexit vote has added to that pleasingness.

Rose, who will step down at today's AGM, to be replaced by Geoff Cooper, also warned over uncertainty created by the vote, but added that expectations for AO's UK business remained unchanged.

Considering it raised its full-year forecast back in March thanks to a focus on "driving efficiencies", that's good news for investors.

What AO World said

Rose added:

The business remains on track with its long-term strategic plan. Customer satisfaction continues to be exceptional in all of our territories, and development of the UK computing and German audio-visual categories progresses as we look forward to launching them for our customers later this year. Our brand awareness continues to grow, underpinned by our unique culture, values and proposition.

In short

A well-timed expansion into Europe and further brand recognition has pushed up revenues for the FTSE 250-listed brand.

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