Adore Beauty shares rise as first half sales jump 18pc

The average order value was up 5.4 per cent to $106.7 in the first half ending December 31.

Ms O’Shannessy said the positive trading momentum in the first half continued into the second half with revenue growth over the first six weeks up 14 per cent. This was below consensus’ implied second half estimated revenue growth of 19.9 per cent, according to Jarden analysts.

Adore Beauty is seeking to get a larger slice of the online beauty and personal care market valued at $1.3 billion in Australia.

Sales revenue jumped 18 per cent to $113.1 million in the first half, boosted by the growth in active customers – those that have spent with the online retailer in the past 12 months – which increased 13 per cent in the current year to 875,597.

Sales slowed in the second quarter after Adore Beauty revealed in October that first-quarter sales surged 25 per cent on the prior period, underpinned by lockdowns and a structural shift to online.

Customers are shifting away from cosmetics to skin care products amid the pandemic which has emphasised self-care and health while consumers spend more time at home.

Earnings before interest, tax, depreciation, and amortisation fell 27 per cent to $3.8 million and the EBITDA margin was 3.3 per cent, in line with prior guidance to maintain a 2 per cent to 4 per cent margin in the short to medium term. This guidance was reconfirmed on Tuesday.

Net profit after tax fell 22 per cent to $1.9 million. No dividends were paid.

The company is well funded, with $25.1 million in cash as of December 31, and no debt.

Inventory levels increased to support revenue growth and mitigate supply chain issues.

Ms O’Shannessy noted that uncertainty remains given the current COVID-19 situation, and did not provide firm profit or sales guidance.

UBS retail analysts said the result overall was better than expected with second quarter sales a touch ahead of its estimates for 4 per cent growth in quarter.

Jarden analysts told clients that the result and trading update should give investors confidence that Adore Beauty can grow revenue even when bricks and mortar competitors are open for business.

Adore Beauty floated in October 2020 at $6.75 per share to much hype out of Quadrant Private Equity, which still owns 32.5 per cent.

In early trade on Tuesday, the stock gained 4.44 per cent to $2.82 per share, but investors are still substantially underwater.

There has been plenty of drama since then – including last year when former chairman and Quadrant staffer Justin Ryan left the business to set up a new private equity firm with Adore Beauty founder Kate Morris.

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