Virgin Wines stocked up for Christmas a year early to avoid disruption

Shares in the online retailer made gains on Thursday morning after the trading update.

Wine bottles
Wine bottles

Virgin Wines has said it started stocking up for this Christmas last year in a bid to avoid supply disruption as it posted a sales jump in its maiden annual figures.

Shares in the online wine retailer made gains on Thursday morning after the trading update.

The company told shareholders it is “confident” it remains well placed to continue to offer customers a full range of drinks from around the world after taking action to avoid supply chain disruption.

Virgin said it is well prepared for the key Christmas period after starting preparations last year to “mitigate any issues around lack of stock availability”.

It also said that despite wider economic challenges, including rising inflation, consumer demand has remained “buoyant” and its stock levels are “in excellent shape”.

Bosses said they are “optimistic and excited” about the year ahead, as they stressed the firm is trading in line with expectations for the new financial year.

Wine glasses
Virgin Wines said it sought to avoid supply disruption by ordering its Christmas stock last year (Virgin Wines/PA)(PA)

It hailed 13.3% sales growth in the quarter to September, against the same period last year, after a 10.7% rise in customer numbers.

It came as the group reported that revenues jumped by 30% to £73.6 million for the year to June, compared with the previous year.

Meanwhile, company pre-tax profits dropped to £1.7 million from £2.8 million in the previous year after being weighed down by £3.5 million in exceptional costs related to its stock market float.

Jay Wright, chief executive of Virgin Wines, said: “Full-year 2021 has been a transformational year for the group, starting a new chapter on the public markets and emerging in a stronger financial position.

“Our focus this year has been on acquiring increased numbers of new customers, converting them to become long-term advocates of Virgin Wines, whilst maximising the loyalty of our existing customers and, in turn, driving growth in our overall customer base.

“I am delighted that all of these objectives were met and that all our core trading channels have seen substantial year-on-year growth.

“Following this milestone year, I look forward to working with our stakeholders over the coming 12 months to maintain this exciting momentum and drive the business further towards achieving its significant potential.”

Shares were 5.4% higher in early trading on Thursday.

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