‘Robust consumer demand’ boosts Victorian Plumbing sales for 2023

Online bathroom giant Victorian Plumbing has increased its revenue for 2023 after what was a static year in 2022.

The results come just days after the move that saw arch rival Victoria Plum sold in a pre-pack deal to AHK Design, which was roundly criticised by Victorian Plumbing chief executive Mark Radcliffe.

In its latest full-year financial trading update, Victorian Plumbing said its revenue for the year ended September 30, 2023, were up by 6% over 2022, when the company reported sales of £269.4 million.

The 6% increase was an improvement over its 2022 performance, when sales remained more or less static compared with £268.8m in 2021.

The online retailer said that this growth was driven by increased order volumes, while average order values remained in line with the year before (£306). A robust performance in the first half of 2023 continued into the second half and it reported “robust consumer UK demand”.

The statement forecast a profit (EBITDA) “in line with market expectations”. In 2022, EBITDA profits plummeted by 51% to £19.5m compared with £40.1m in 2021. Operating profit also plunged by 40% to £12.1m for 2022.

The company claimed in this latest statement that “profitability has improved year on year, driven by reduced shipping costs and favourable foreign exchange movements”. In the 2022 results, it reported that gross profit margins had increased by 1% to 45% in H2 although for the full year it was down from 49% in 2021 to 45%.

Commenting on the trading results, chief executive Mark Radcliffe said: “This has been a year of continued delivery of our growth plans. Our clearly defined strategy and unique business model have resulted in increased order volumes and resilient average order values, with customers continuing to appreciate the choice of great value products that we offer across our ranges.

“As a highly cash generative business with a strong balance sheet, we continue to invest in the business – across people, infrastructure, technology, and our new UK distribution centre, the successful delivery of which will enable further growth in the core bathroom category as well as strategic category expansion. We are confident that Victorian Plumbing’s profitable growth strategy will continue to deliver long-term value to all stakeholders.”

Victorian Plumbing also reported that it has now signed the lease on its new 544,000sq ft distribution centre in Leyland, Lancashire, which it said should be operational on schedule in 2024.

Victorian Plumbing claims to be the ‘UK’s largest bathroom retailer’, based on a report by market research company Mintel that ranked them as the biggest bathroom retailer by revenue. 

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