• Tuesday, May 17, 2022

Business

Online retailer THG clicks on £4.5 bn London share sale

FILE PHOTO: Britain’s prime minister Boris Johnson (L) is shown around by company founder Matthew Moulding (R) during a visit to a fulfillment centre for The Hut Group (THG) during a general election campaign event on December 10, 2019 in Warrington, United Kingdom. (Photo by Ben Stansall – WPA Pool / Getty Images)

By: Pramod Thomas

BRITISH online retailer The Hut Group, which sells cosmetic and nutrition products across the world, on Thursday (27) unveiled plans for London’s biggest stock market flotation so far this year.

The Hut Group, whose portfolio includes beauty website Lookfantastic and nutrition brand Myprotein, is seeking an Initial Public Offering (IPO) that values the entire business at £4.5 billion ($5.9 billion), it said in a statement.

THG added that it will sell at least 20 per cent of its stock, in both new and existing shares, but it did not specify any time frame.

The company, which is based in Manchester in northwestern England and was founded in 2004, has seen its popularity surge this year as the coronavirus lockdown sparks a global online shopping boom.

The Hut Group distribution Centre in Omega, Warrington.

Against the backdrop of the pandemic, THG’s revenues surged by almost 36 per cent to £676 million in the six months to the end of June, compared with a year earlier. It employs 7,000 staff.

“Our intention to float THG on the London Stock Exchange reflects the achievements of the past but also our strong belief in the significant potential for THG in the future,” said founder Matthew Moulding, who is chief executive and chairman.

“The brands we own today give us leading strategic positions in prestige beauty and nutrition.”

Revenues soared by almost a quarter last year to stand at £1.1 billion, while earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) stood at £111.3 million.

THG added that more than 610 million visits were made to websites using its Ingenuity technology platform last year, while more than 80 million products were dispatched globally.

The company’s operations comprise product development, manufacturing, content creation and marketing, as well as digital commerce via its payment, hosting, courier and logistics networks.

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