Boohoo records 40% percent rise in sales despite poor working conditions controversy

Monday 18th January 2021 10:45 EST

On Thursday 14th June, fashion giant Boohoo reported a record 40 per cent increase in its strong sales during the Covid-19 restrictions despite the organisation being entangled in repeated controversies around poor working conditions of their labour workforce.

The online fashion retailer has revealed group revenues jumped to £660.8 million on the back of strong Christmas and Black Friday sales. The company expects to deliver revenue growth of between 36 per cent and 38 per cent for the financial year to February. As a result of the strong UK growth, the company is expected to expand its warehouse capacity with a new site for its Nasty Gal, Karen Millen, Coast, Oasis and Warehouse brands. The fashion giant is reportedly also making progress with its plans to open it’s own “huge” new factory in Thurmaston Lane, Leicester, due to open in April, which will create up to 1,000 new jobs.

This news emerges after the Leicester City Council announced the establishment of a £300,000 training academy in the heart of Leicester’s troubled textile industry. Leicester Fashion Technology Academy (LFTA) will be set up in Spinney Hills where the council is working with training provider Fashion Enter Ltd and clothing company Ethically Sourced Products Ltd on the scheme. The sector has been in the spotlight over the last year over concerns about worker exploitation by some textile bosses and the Government and city council have been involved in a war of words blaming each other for issues.

Last month Boohoo executives told MPs they had cut ties with 64 of their suppliers in Leicester over concerns staff were being underpaid and overworked in poor conditions. The company reportedly expects to deliver an earnings margin of around 10 per cent despite increased costs in the face of the pandemic. Boohoo said it is making “excellent progress” to put in pace recommendations following Alison Levitt QC’s report on the scandal, which stated the company was aware of the factory failings in Leicester.

Mahmud Kamani, founder and group executive chairman, said:,“I’m pleased to publish Sir Brian Leveson’s first report today.

“I’m immensely proud of the speed with which our team has worked to effect change during such a challenging period for the group, and it’s encouraging to see our progress acknowledged in the report.”

John Lyttle, chief executive of Boohoo, said: “I’m delighted with the group’s performance over the peak trading period.

“Our team worked exceptionally hard in 2020 as we navigated the many challenges, including the Covid-19 pandemic and the successful acquisition and integration of Oasis and Warehouse. Growth has been strong across our multi-brand platform and we have continued to grow our market share across all geographies. The group is in an excellent position entering 2021, which we expect to be another year of progress towards our goal of leading the fashion e-commerce market globally.”

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