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Revolution Beauty reports post-pandemic dip in online sales
02 June 2023

Problem-hit Revolution Beauty, whose shares have been suspended since September, said it has seen a drop in digital sales but has been helped by customers returning to normal shops.

In a set of heavily delayed interim results, the business said digital wholesale revenue fell 22% in the six months to the end of August 2022, whilst its own web sales dropped 8%.

It came as customers chose bricks-and-mortar shops in larger quantities as pandemic restrictions and fears lifted.

In the UK, revenue from stores grew 21% compared with the same period a year earlier, the company said, as it signed a new deal with Boots and saw "strong" sales in Superdrug.

Loss before tax – at £28.8 million a year earlier – was stemmed to just £13.3 million. Revenue dipped 4.2% to £75.3 million.

Bob Holt, CEO of Revolution Beauty, said: “Overall, performance was resilient in the first half of the 2023 financial year, and the group narrowed previous losses, and saw significant margin expansion.

“The half was one where our digital business was impacted by consumers moving back to bricks-and-mortar retail stores post-pandemic, but where Revolution’s omni-channel retail strategy mitigated the decline, with solid retail performances in our key markets.

“Our future growth is first and foremost via a global retailer strategy.

“Our direct-to-consumer online customer base grew in the year, albeit we recognise the sentiment of a decline in online sales.”

Last week Revolution Beauty reduced its earnings by £23 million for the year ending last February compared with the figures it had previously reported.

Significant problems in its accounts and concerns from auditors delayed its audited final results for several months. Shares had been suspended in the meantime.

The business had found that it had sold products worth £9.6 million in February 2022 just before the end of the financial year. This should not have been counted towards its revenue.

The news follows the departure of Co-founder Tom Allsworth, who resigned last week with immediate effect. It came after a series of resignations at Revolution Beauty, following an independent investigation into the group's finances.

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