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Naked Wines raises sales guidance after strong first half

"Naked Wines is a bigger, better business than it was twelve months ago,” said chief executive Nick Devlin

Naked Wines Plc -

Naked Wines Plc (LON:WINE) has said it is upgrading its sales forecasts after a stellar first half in which revenues were up by 80%.

The online retailer is raising its 'central case' growth assumptions to 55%-65% for the 12 months to the end of next March.

“The positive trading momentum has been sustained into the start of the second half of the year, although we are mindful of significant levels of political and economic uncertainty,” the company said in the outlook statement with its half-year results.

First-half revenues were £157mln with the repeat contribution growing by 89% to £36.2mln. The repeat customer profit margin increased by 3.5 percentage points to 29%.

"Naked believes that the new customer cohort acquired in the period is of a higher quality than in the past, showing higher retention and early purchasing than equivalent cohorts in prior years, partly because of the channel shift to online under COVID-19," said City broker Liberum.

Naked, now the largest direct-to-consumer wine business in the US, said it made a ‘material investment’ in new customers, which more than doubled to £22.7mln.

This meant it posted a modest loss of £3.2mln at the underlying, or EBIT level, which nevertheless represented a £1.3mln year-on-year improvement.

The more relevant benchmark for a company such as Naked, which is an in a significant growth phase, is the cash position, which strengthened by £21.6mln to £76.3mln.

Operationally, the firm said it scaled quickly to meet increasing demand with warehouse floorspace doubling and its customer service capacity up by 80%.

Naked’s base of subscribers, called Angels, rose to 757,000, up 37% year on year.

"Naked Wines is a bigger, better business than it was twelve months ago,” said chief executive Nick Devlin in the statement.

“The last six months have been a critical period in the development of the company. We have delivered exceptional growth and a permanent step change in scale and efficiency for the organisation. We have a business today that is not only larger but structurally improved and ideally positioned to deliver sustained growth in the coming years,” he added.

The shares marked time around £5 each. Liberum lifted its price target for the stock to £5.75 from 495p. The broker continues to rate Naked a 'buy'.

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Quick facts: Naked Wines Plc

Price: 697 GBX

Market: AIM
Market Cap: £509.94 m

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