Advertisement

Is ASOS over-hyped? Online retail star's shares plunge 30%

British retailer ASOS is based in Barnsley, South Yorkshire. Photo: ASOS

ASOS has been something of a British success story, selling clothing online to every country in the world from its hub in Barnsley.

As Seen On Screen began trading in north London in 2000 and has gone on to cause high street names like Marks and Spencer all sorts of headaches - but it is starting to experience some problems of its own.

The ASOS distribution centre near Barnsley, South Yorkshire. Credit: PA

In April its results were disappointing, and this morning it revealed it is not going to make as much money this year as it thought.

Profit warnings always have a negative effect on a company's share price and this morning ASOS’s crashed on opening.

Online retailer ASOS is a British retail success story - but today it posted a profits warning. Credit: PA

In February, the stock market valued ASOS as highly as Morrisons - despite it having a fraction of the supermarket’s sales. Since then its share price has more than halved; from £70 to £31.

The pound has risen, making ASOS clothes look more expensive abroad, meanwhile, here in the UK it is having to discount heavily to grow sales.

This is nothing more than a bad hair day, according to the boss. Nick Robertson described this period as “a blip”.

ASOS is not in any danger, it's profitable and still growing. The damage here is reputational.

ASOS shares have been trading on great expectations of immense future potential but some investors have taken the view that the company has been over-hyped.