Brand acquisition reaps rewards for Noni B

27 August 2019, Written by Michie Leppard and Matt Ogg

Brand acquisition reaps rewards for Noni B

A $31 million purchase of five iconic clothing brands last year has paid off for women's fashion retailer Noni B (ASX: NBL) as revenue more than doubled and profits rose by a fifth in FY19.

Noni B scooped up the brands Millers, Katies, Crossroads, Autograph and Rivers from Specialty Fashion Group (now City Chic Collective) in May 2018.

Since then these brands have seen sales grow by 15 per cent under their new owners. Meanwhile, City Chic Collective (ASX: CCX) also reported a positive result today. 

Noni B highlights revenue jumped 136 per cent to reach $372.4 million in FY19, while EBITDA was up 22 per cent at $45.5 million.

This represents a slight lift on previous profit forecasts which pegged growth at 21 per cent.

Noni B managing director Scott Evans highlights the group has achieved year-on-year growth since FY15, but altered its strategy in FY19.

"Whilst comparable store growth remains important, comparable gross margin growth is our priority," he says.

Online has also been a sucess for the Sydney-based company, with its contribution to sales rising from 4 per cent to 9.8 per cent.

This achievement comes after business analytics group illion noted in September last year that Australian retailers were failing more than ever.

"The retail sector is battling weak consumer confidence, falling house prices and competition from online and overseas competitors," illion CEO Simon Bligh said at the time.

Noni B has since announced its plans for strategic growth, with hopes of increasing the online store footprint of all brands, whilst also pushing for digital expansion in product and non-apparel categories.

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Author: Michie Leppard and Matt Ogg

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