Retail group looks to accelerate Home offering as demand grows

Online fashion and homewares retail group N Brown has reported further progress within its Home offering, with returns down.

According to its latest full year results ended 26 February 2022, N Brown, which owns brands JD Williams, Jacamo, and Simply Be, said overall group sales declined 1.8% to £715.7m, as a result of a 0.6% decline in total Product revenue and a 4.0% decline in Financial Services revenue, each ‘reflecting an improvement in trajectory over prior year’.

Adjusted EBITDA increased 11.9% to £95m, with the increase in Financial Services margin more than offsetting costs annualising against the initial Covid-19 related reductions, and investment in brand building.

Within its Home division, the group said its existing offering allowed the company to ‘capitalise on the Homeware boom’ through the pandemic, with its brands able to ‘pivot towards this category by maximising customer demand’.

JD Williams, as a multi-category platform, represented the largest share of Home sales for the Group at 39%.

“The Home category continues to evolve with the acceleration of own design product which is unique to us. We continue to design, develop, and procure furnishings in key categories across Home and Tech, with 70% of our Home and Furniture offer being own design. The success of the approach is reflected in an 18% year-on-year reduction in returns,” the group said.

Looking ahead, N Brown said that Home will ‘remain an important category’, but its focus will shift to growing this through the multi category platform of JD Williams alongside a standalone Home brand.

“This enables us to improve efficiency in our marketing spend, and maximise the cross-shopping experiences of our customers,” it said.

“Within the JD Williams home offer, we are launching a series of homeware labels with Julipa, Osborne and Gray and Anise, complementing the clothing ranges.”

Steve Johnson, Chief Executive, added: “I am pleased with our continued progress in transforming N Brown into a more focused digital business, with a distinct and improving offer across our strategic brands. Our strategic brands returned to growth in the year with growing customer numbers.”

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