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AO predicts full-year sales up 27%

Online electricals retailer AO.com has announced strong growth and a 27 per cent increase in sales for the year to the end of March.

In its pre-close statement, the company highlighted a strong performance in the fourth quarter of 2015, with pre-tax profits ahead of expectations after it had “continued to gain market share”

For the full year, AO said that UK sales had grown by around 18.5 per cent, with group sales up 27 per cent and adjusted pre-tax (EBITDA) profits of around £17 million. AO.com total revenue for the previous financial year (ending March 2015) was £476.7m (up 23.8 per cent on 2014).

AO has been widening its operations into Europe, starting in Germany, and officially launched into the Netherlands on March 1. The statement said that adjusted EBITDA for the full year in Europe will be slightly better than expected thanks to its “focus on driving efficiencies”. It also said that the move into a new regional distribution centre in Bergheim later this year would accelerate volume growth.

Sales revenue on Europe for FY 2015 was £5.8m. Taking start-up costs into account, an £11m loss in Europe resulted in a group operating loss for the year of £2.2m.

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