Online fashion giant Asos voiced caution over how the rest of the global Covid pandemic will play out as said it expects volatility in the months ahead.
The retailer also highlighted that profits are being squeezed in part due to increased freight costs and global supply chain disruption.
But bosses remain optimistic for the future, highlighting the ever-growing demand for online clothes and a boom in sales during the four months to June 30th – despite high streets reopening as lockdown restrictions eased.
Customers have also taken advantage of the recent lockdown easing, with more dresses and “occasion wear” rising in popularity.
The company said in an update to the stock market: “Trading in the last three weeks of the period was more muted, as continued Covid uncertainty and inclement weather impacted market demand.
“We anticipate a measure of volatility to continue in the near term, given the rapidly evolving Covid situation worldwide.”
Sales in the four months to June 30th jumped 31 per cent to £1.29 billion (€1.5 billion), including a 60 per cent rise in UK sales to £526.4 million (€616 million) – the strongest growth of any of its markets.
The US saw growth of 31 per cent to £144.8 million (€169.5 million) – although this was helped by currency fluctuations in Asos’s favour – and the EU was slower at 20 per cent to £388.3 million (€454.5 million).
Chief executive Nick Beighton said: “Asos has delivered another strong performance against a backdrop of continued social restrictions and global supply chain pressures.
“Although mindful of the continued impacts of the pandemic on our customers in the short term, we believe that the structure of the global e-commerce fashion market has changed forever, which will drive an increase in online fashion sales over the long term.”