ES in N Brown Group jumped almost 14 per cent yesterday as the home shopping clothes and homeware retailer said a trial of its brands in the US had proved it could grab a share of the $35bn plus-size ladieswear market.
“We’re very encouraged by our performance there... everything suggests there is a place for us in that market,” chief executive Allan Brown said, warning that the US is unlikely to show a profit for another two years as it continues to build its customer base.
Brown’s comments came as the Manchester-based group, which targets older and larger shoppers with brands such as Simply Be, Jacamo and Marisota, reported a 4.5 per cent drop in first-half underlying profit to £42m – around £1.5m ahead of consensus forecasts.
The group saw a strong pick-up in trading in recent weeks, with like-for-like sales up 9.4 per cent in the first six weeks of the second half. Total sales rose 53 per cent to £3.4m in the six months to 1 September.