Hunter Boot flying high with return to profit, US and e-tail growth are key
Boots specialist Hunter had a good 2018 with a collaboration with Disney helping it to swing back to a pre-tax profit. And future collaborations with big names such as Stella McCartney and Peppa Pig are likely to contribute to further growth.
The company had made a pre-tax loss of £5.3 million in 2017 but a year later was able to generate profits of £6.3 million.
Operating profit last year was £7 million after an operating loss of £4.9 million a year earlier. The company posted profit after tax of £5.2 million.
The company hasn't yet filed its accounts for the period but several newspapers reported the figures, also saying that its sales reached a record £113.8 million last year, a 9% rise, boosted by growth in the US market.
It's a strong turnaround for the Edinburgh-based company that was bought out of administration in 2006 and which has seen varying performances since then.
The US is the brand’s largest market and appears to have benefited from that Disney collaboration, as well as the company’s greater focus on direct-to-consumer sales online. Sales rose 13% in the US last year.
It saw an equally strong sales leap in the Asia-Pacific region (also up 13%), while Japanese sales rose a massive 25% on a currency-neutral basis. And outside of its core markets, sales were up an impressive 142%, suggesting plenty more potential for future growth. It didn’t disclose its UK percentages.
The brand’s profitability was also helped by lower costs during the period, but adding new product categories was important too with bags and clothing helping to drive a 50% increase in full price sales that would have boosted margins.
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