Hotel Chocolat’s shares have jumped more than 10 per cent today, as it posted solid revenue growth for the past year, suggesting the chocolatier’s pivot to becoming a digital brand is making headway.
Revenue increased by over 20 per cent, which Walid Koudmani, market analyst at financial brokerage XTB said marked “encouraging signs for its growth drivers which were implemented two years ago.”
The brand noted that some 70 per cent of its revenue for the 52 weeks to 27 June were pulled in through digital streams, as well as partners and continuity products.
Despite stores being closed for around six months of the year, in response to emergency pandemic measures, the group posted a profit before tax “ahead of market expectations”, as the figure swelled to £10.1m from £2.4m last year.
Its share earnings swung from a loss in comparison with a year prior, as the chocolatier secured 4.5p per share as opposed to a loss of 6.3p.
Koudmani added: “Moving forward, it will be important to remain consistent while adapting to the challenges of supply shortages and as stores continue to reopen.”
The brand said its investments have managed to increase production capacity by 66 per cent, which is “sufficient to support £250m of chocolate sales” every year, it said in a statement.
An equity placing in July also saw the chocolatier rally £40m to bolster its factory network – which it expects will support £500m in sales of chocolate products over three years, as well as helping it become a ‘digitally-led’ chocolatier.
CEO and co-founder Angus Thirlwell said: “These results show we have now evolved from a UK store-led brand to a globally ambitious digital-led brand.
“I am confident that the strategic progress we have achieved over the past year has improved the performance and prospects of the business for significant years to come.”