Asos sales rise despite Barnsley blaze

Asos has reported a 35% rise in UK sales despite losses of between £25m and £30m due to the fire at its Barnsley distribution centre in June.

In the 12 months to August 2014, UK sales climbed to £372m, while total retail sales rose by 27% to £975m.

In the three months to the end of August, Asos sales went up by 15% overall. UK sales saw a 33% increase, while international sales rose 6%.

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But shares in online fashion firm Asos fell 14% in early trading today after it downgraded its profit forecast for the coming financial year.

It said it expects profit before tax for the year to 31 August 2015 to be at a similar level to 2013/14.

“Due to the fire at our Barnsley distribution centre, we lost sales during the quarter of between £25m and £30m with a retail gross margin impact of c.200 basis points. After adjusting for insurance proceeds, we expect profit before tax for the year to be in line with market expectations,” said Asos CEO Nick Robertson.

The fire at the retailer’s main distribution centre came just two weeks after Asos issued a profit warning, blaming the strength of the pound, which hurt overseas sales and forced it to launch a series of promotions.

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