Market Harborough-based Joules, the lifestyle brand, has returned to profit in the year to 30 May 2021 following “truly unprecedented trading conditions.”
In its annual results, the firm posted a pre-tax profit of £2 million, up from a loss of £24.8 million in the year prior.
Meanwhile, group revenue increased by 4.3% to £199 million, in comparison to £190.8 million in FY20, with strong e-commerce sales growth and the contribution from its acquisition of Garden Trading more than offsetting the impact of enforced store closures, the cancellation of country shows across the UK and the impact of the pandemic on the group’s wholesale customers.
E-commerce sales increased by 48% to £122 million (FY20: £82.7m) and represented 77% of the group’s retail revenue during the period. Overall store and shows sales were £36.6 million in the year (FY20: £63.2m).
Wholesale revenue in the period was £35.3 million, a 17% reduction year-on-year (FY20: £42.7m), reflecting the ongoing impact of COVID-19 on many of the group’s wholesale partners both in the UK and internationally.
Nick Jones, Chief Executive Officer, said: “It is safe to say that FY21 was characterised by truly unprecedented trading conditions. Against this backdrop, the Group delivered strong strategic progress, including growing our digital proposition, increasing our active customer base, and further diversifying as a leading lifestyle platform with the successful acquisition of Garden Trading and the continued expansion of Friends of Joules.
“At the centre of our growth strategy remains the strong Joules brand. During the year we continued to deliver on our brand’s clear mission and purpose – to brighten our customers’ lives and conduct business in a responsible way.
“As more and more consumers increasingly valued their leisure time spent outdoors and time doing the things they enjoy with the people they love, our brand has become increasingly relevant to a greater number of customers, reflected by brand health metrics reaching all-time highs.
“The Group’s strategic progress would not have been possible without the hard work, flexibility and, above all, dedication of our outstanding team. I am incredibly proud of, and grateful for, the commitment shown by our people, from our head office teams to those on the front line in our stores, during this challenging period.
“As we move into the new financial year, the continued success and growth of Friends of Joules and our strengthened position in the home, garden and outdoor sector means that the Group now offers significantly more products and categories than ever before, therefore providing customers with greater choice and more reasons to shop with us.
“As a result of the strength of the Joules brand and the increasing diversification of the Group’s digital-led business model, we believe that the Group is very well positioned to continue to deliver its ambitious growth plans.”