Strong growth in e-fulfilment drove a 25 per cent rise in Clipper’s operating profit in the year to 30th April.
EBIT in e-fulfilment and returns management were up 48 per cent at £5.5 million while sales rose 32 per cent to £60.6m.
In contrast, in non e-fulfilment logistics sales faster than profits. Sales were up 14 per cent to £102.1m and EBIT was up 9.8 per cent to £10.1m.
The company said it was particularly please with the performance of its e-fulfilment and returns management operations. “Our strategy has been to become a market leader in the e-commerce sector, and to be a thought leader in the provision of value-added services across the sector.”
Clipper highlighted a number of contract successes including ASOS and Go Outdoors e-commerce contracts won in the year to 30 April 2014, the relocation of the Tesco online clothing operation from Selby site to a new site at Daventry following the securing of a five year extension to our existing contract; and securing the s.Oliver returns management contract. Shortly before the 2015 year end, it also won the contract to provide e-fulfilment services to Zara in certain European countries. Shortly after the year end it also commenced warehousing and e-fulfilment services to support Ireland’s largest retailer’s online retail operations.
Non e-fulfilment is still a key part of the company’s strategy. It said: “The Group will continue to develop and deliver truly value-added services to address the needs of retailers in traditional bricks and mortar logistics, including receipt of inbound product, storage, store-readiness of product, and distribution to retail destinations.”
Group EBIT was up 24.9 per cent to £12m on group revenue that was up 16.7 per cent to £234.8m.
Executive chairman Steve Parkin said: “Our new reporting year has started strongly with the signing of terms for a Click & Collect solution with John Lewis and we look forward to updating the market with further successes through the coming year.”