LONDON — Hunter Boot Ltd., which has been aggressively pursuing a direct-to-consumer marketing strategy, swung back into profit as sales rose 9 percent to 113.8 million pounds in the fiscal year ended Dec. 29, 2018.
The company said adjusted EBITDA climbed 54 percent in the year to 10.6 million pounds. In a reversal of fortune, operating profit hit 7 million pounds, while after-tax profit climbed to 5.2 million pounds. In fiscal 2017, the company had posted an operating loss of 4.9 million pounds, and an after-tax loss of 6.5 million pounds, according to Companies House, the official register of U.K. businesses.
Hunter touted increased gross profit margin to 54.2 percent, and strong growth in the U.S., its largest market, of 13 percent. Sales in Asia-Pacific also grew 13 percent, reflecting Hunter’s direct control of its activities in the region. Japanese sales increased 25 percent in local currency, the company said. Hunter also reduced its administrative expenses for the year, which helped to boost the bottom line.
Sales outside key markets grew by 142 percent, while the addition of bag and apparel categories helped boost full-price sales by 50 percent, the company said Sunday.
Vincent Wauters, chief executive officer, called 2018 “a landmark year” with growth across key markets and channels. “Our global e-commerce is thriving, we have an established multi-channel distribution platform and we have successfully diversified our product offering,” he said.
Wauters said he was looking forward to more growth and collaborations, with brands as diverse as Stella McCartney and Peppa Pig. “We are delivering against our long-term plan and vision to fulfill the brand’s very significant global potential,” he said.