Tuesday 20 August 2019

The Hut Group’s annual sales soar on back of acquisition drive

The digital retail group has reported a 24% surge in sales to £916m for the year to December 31.

The Hut Group saw sales soar in 2018 amid soaring investment, which will see the construction of a new HQ near Manchester Airport (The Hut Group/PA)
The Hut Group saw sales soar in 2018 amid soaring investment, which will see the construction of a new HQ near Manchester Airport (The Hut Group/PA)

By Henry Saker-Clark, PA City Reporter

Annual sales have soared at The Hut Group over the past year on the back of its continued acquisition drive.

The digital retail group, which owns brands such as Glossybox, Illamasqua and Skinstore, has reported a 24% surge in sales to £916 million for the year to December 31 2018, up from £736 million a year earlier.

The group, which specialises in health and well-being brands, saw earnings before tax and interest jump 31% to £91 million during the year.

Sales growth was driven by around £180 million worth of investments, including a number of major acquisitions.

It spent £82 million on strategic acquisitions in 2018, snapping up language technology business Language Connect, beauty research business Acheson & Acheson and eye cosmetic brand Eyeko.

It also pumped £98 million of capital investment into technology and infrastructure projects over the period.

During the year, The Hut Group created around 1,500 jobs, largely in the North West, taking its total global workforce to more than 5,000 staff.

The business, which was founded in 2004, announced its first bricks-and-mortar site at the end of June as it continues to boost its profile.

Matthew Moulding, founder and chief executive officer of the group, said: “This has been another landmark year for The Hut Group.

“Our strategic investments to develop our technology, infrastructure, brands and people, have delivered exceptional global growth with 66% of our sales achieved internationally.”

The company has also pledged £760 million investment in the North West of England with the construction of a custom-built headquarters near Manchester Airport. Work started at the site earlier this year.

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