Farfetch is on the upswing, and Wall Street is taking notice.
The online luxury platform reported more than $1 billion in revenues — a nearly 70 percent increase from 2018 — and more than $2.1 billion in gross merchandise value last year, a metric the company defines as the monetary value of the orders processed. The GMV figure can serve as an indicator of revenue, Farfetch explained in the earnings report.
Investors pleased with the performance sent Farfetch shares climbing nearly almost 15 percent to around $11 in after-hours trading Thursday following the fourth-quarter earnings release.
The company nonetheless did report widened losses of $110 million for the quarter ended Dec. 31, representing losses of 34 cents per share. It also incurred losses of $374 million for 2019. In 2018, its losses were $10 million for the fourth quarter, and $156 million for the year.
Still, the company pulled in an encouraging haul. Its revenues for the fourth quarter of 2019 were $382 million, it had more than 2 million active consumers — up from 1.4 million in 2018 — and the average order value was $608 in 2019.
“2019 was a landmark year for Farfetch, and it could not have ended better,” Farfetch founder and chief executive officer José Neves said on the company’s earnings call Thursday. “We continued to gain market share across our regions, further entrench ourselves as the partner of choice for luxury brands…to become the clear leader in our space.”
Neves also said he didn’t expect the ongoing coronavirus outbreak to hurt the company’s performance at the moment, highlighting its lack of inventory risk.
“Ninety percent of the inventory we have accessible to sell on our channels is third-party inventory,” he said on the call. “We are not taking risk on the vast majority of our inventory position.”
The company had flummoxed investors since it began trading publicly in September 2018, when it opened at $20 a share and rose to above $30 in the aftermath. Since then, a combination of serial acquisitions, link-ups and lackluster earnings have deflated its shares.
After signaling in late 2018 that it was buying sneaker marketplace Stadium Goods for about $250 million, Farfetch moved last year to incorporate JD.com’s luxury shopping platform Toplife into Farfetch China. Then, in August, it said it spent $675 million to acquire Milan-based brand platform New Guards Group, which holds licenses from brands including Virgil Abloh’s high-end streetwear label Off-White.
All that activity dented its stock last year, which dropped 40 percent after the New Guards announcement, and fell even further to below $9 in September.
On Thursday, Neves said the New Guards acquisition was already paying off. The New Guards’ brands yielded $75 million in “brand platform gross profit” in five months after the acquisition, according to the company.
“I am extremely happy with the New Guards contributions toward the core Farfetch business already,” he said. “In the second half of 2019, the New Guards portfolio sold more than any other single brand on Farfetch.”