Wednesday 26th Oct 2016 - Logistics Manager

Clipper finds fulfilment in e-commerce

E-fulfilment was the star performer for Clipper Logistics with sales and profits up by half in the year to 30th April.

The company, which floated on the Stock Exchange in May, saw e-fulfilment sales rise 55.5 per cent to 46m while EBIT was up 49.4 per cent to 3.7m.

Revenue in the non-e-fulfilment logistics operation was up 29.2 per cent to 89.6m and EBIT rose 15.8 per cent to 9.2m.

Clipper expects the growth in the e-commerce market to continue double digit growth until around 2017 saying: Online sales in the UK are predicted to grow to 125 billion in 2022, by which point one third of sales in the UK are forecast to be conducted online.

ew contracts during the year included SuperGroup, ASOS and Antler. Since the year end it has signed a five-year contract extension with Tesco.

The company recently launched a returns management product Boomerang and said: It is estimated that 25 to 40 per cent of all clothing and footwear purchases in the UK are returned. Retailers are becoming increasingly concerned to ensure that returns management is handled effectively so that their brands are not damaged by customers using social media. In addition, rectification during the returns management process can add value and enhance margin for the retailer.

While much of the growth has come e-commerce sector, Clipper said traditional logistics services were still very much part of the product portfolio.

The Group will continue to develop and deliver truly value-added services to address the needs of retailers in more traditional areas of logistics services, including receipt of inbound product, storage, store-readiness of product, and distribution to retail destinations.

Clipper also has a commercial vehicles business, Northern Commercials, which saw sales rise 6 per cent to 66.8m and EBIT rise 25.4 per cent to 1.8m. Overall, group revenue was up 25.2 per cent to 201.1m and group adjusted EBIT was up ten per cent to 9.6m. However, exception costs meant that profit after tax was down from 3.8m to 2.8m.

Chairman Steve Parkin said: The strong performance delivered in the financial year to 30 April 2014 has continued into the current financial year. The business is advancing in line with its strategy and is poised for further growth, both in the UK and internationally. We are proud to have achieved a successful listing on the Premium Segment of the London Stock Exchange and look forward to creating further shareholder value in the next phase of the businesss development.