The Hut Group hikes forecasts after third-quarter sales surge

Recently floated online retailer The Hut Group (THG) has hiked its sales targets after demand surged by more than a third over the past three months.

In its maiden update since launching on the London Stock Exchange last month, THG raised its annual revenue target to between £1.48 billion and £1.52 billion.

Last month, it told investors it expected to post revenues of £1.43 billion for the year.

The technology platform for health and beauty brands revealed that sales jumped 38.6% to £378.1 million for the quarter to September 30, compared with the same period last year.

It reported that direct-to-consumer sales jumped by 51.3% over the period as customers continued to flock to online platforms during the pandemic.

THG hailed “very strong” new customer acquisition during the period, as it saw more people make repeat purchases from its platforms.

The group, which was valued at around £5.4 billion after its stock market float, also said it has set up an advisory board to improve its operations.

The board, which will be on hand to advise on audit and risk, and sustainability committees, will include new members Damian Sanders, Adam Waller and Alan McGill.

Matthew Moulding, group chief executive and executive chairman, said: “I am pleased to report a strong period of trading in our first quarterly update as a public company, including an upgrade to revenue growth guidance for 2020.

“I would like to thank all our colleagues for their huge contribution to date.”

AJ Bell investment director Russ Mould said: “E-commerce firm The Hut Group begins life as a public company very much on the front foot as it upgrades revenue guidance in its maiden trading update.

“Whether this is thanks to an unexpected trading boost or just canny management of investors’ expectations, it should help keep sentiment towards the company in a positive place after a strong start in share price terms to life as a listed entity.

“In order to maintain this momentum, the firm will rely on strong demand across its health supplement and beauty product sites through the Christmas trading period and upcoming Black Friday sales event.”

Shares in the company were 11.8% higher at 745.2p after early trading on Monday.