AO World swings to £18.3 million of profit as COVID-19 fuels e-commerce

Written by: Wajeeh Khan
November 24, 2020
  • AO World swings to £18.3 million of profit as COVID-19 fuels e-commerce.
  • The online electricals retailer's revenue prints at £717 million in fiscal H1.
  • AO World is more than 350% up in the stock market on a year to date basis.

In a report on Tuesday, AO World plc (LON: AO) said that its revenue in the fiscal first half came in 53.2% higher on a year over year basis. The company also said that it concluded H1 in profit as the COVID-19 crisis restricted people to their homes and boosted demand for domestic appliances.

Shares of the company tanked roughly 15% on market open on Tuesday. Including the price action, AO World is now exchanging hands at £3.89 per share. In comparison, it was trading at a sharply lower 50 pence per share in late March.

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On a year to date basis, AO World is now more than 350% up in the stock market. Learn more about why do prices rise and fall in the stock market.

AO World’s revenue prints at £717 million

The novel flu-like virus has so far infected more than 1.5 million people in the United Kingdom and caused over 55 thousand deaths. In an earlier report published in July, AO World had revealed a 53.6% increase in annual core earnings.

The online retailer reported £717 million of revenue in the six months that concluded on 30th September. In comparison, it had posted a much lower £468 million of revenue in the same period last year.

The electricals and household appliances specialist said that its pre-tax profit in the first half printed at £18.3 million versus the year-ago figure of £5.9 million in loss. In separate news from the UK, the quality assurance provider, Intertek Group, recorded a 6% decline in third-quarter revenue after a much broader 13% decline in the prior quarter.

CEO John Roberts’ comments on Tuesday

CEO John Roberts of AO World commented on the financial update on Tuesday and said:

“This has been a half year like no other. I believe our market has changed as a result, forever. Online is now the dominant retail channel for customers and manufacturers alike. We have grown share across all categories and the results we’re announcing today give huge confidence that our business is well set for the future to cement the changes.”

AO World performed largely downbeat in the stock market last year with an annual decline of more than 30%. At the time of writing, the Bolton-based company has a market cap of £1.83 billion and a price to earnings ratio of 1,070.22.