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Three Quick Facts: Ocado, Sports Direct and Purplebricks


Three things you need to know in the financial markets this morning from investment writer, Tony Cross


Online grocery delivery service Ocado is providing some festive cheer with its quarterly trading update published this morning. Revenues for the 13 weeks to 2nd December are up 12% against the same period a year ago, as new fulfilment centres and partnership deals come on stream extending the company’s reach. Average order size is down 1% however, although against the strong underlying growth, this shouldn’t prove too much of a concern.

Sports Direct

Sports Direct has published half year results today, which include the impact of the company’s acquisition of House of Fraser. The business is now far more than just the pile it high sell it cheap high street store and online operations – although this still does dominate in terms of revenue. Premium lifestyle through its Flannels outlet saw growth of around 30%, whilst rest of the world income has been bolstered by acquisitions in the US. The House of Fraser purchase has hit underlying EPS but free cash generation continues to grow.


Interim numbers from Purplebricks have been published this morning. Revenues grew by 75% and international income now accounts for almost one third of the business. The UK operations of the company are profitable, but globally losses continue to mount, more than doubling from a year ago. The net cash position however remains strong, suggesting there’s still a fair bit of runway left for the firm.

With the peak of the Christmas season fast approaching, corporate news flow is starting to slow down. As such, this will be the last Three Quick Facts for 2018, but we’ll be back on Thursday January 3rd. Wishing you a Merry Christmas, and a happy, healthy – and prosperous – 2019.


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This article does not constitute investment advice. Do your own research or consult a professional advisor.

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