Mountain Warehouse has reported record Christmas trading, with sales up 28.8 per cent in the six-weeks to January 1.
The group, which specialises in selling outdoor clothing and equipment, boosted like-for- like sales by 13.6 per cent, with online revenue increasing by 31.8 per cent.
The company served more than one million customers during the festive period who, between them, bought more than 2.5 million items. The company sold more than 250,000 hats and pairs of gloves, 500,000 pairs of socks and 100,000 ski jackets over the festive trading season.
International sales rocketed 71 per cent during the period, accounting for almost 30 per cent of the total. The group’s sister brand Zakti, which sells stylish ski wear, gym, yoga, running and cycling kit, also traded well, after it was helped by the launch of a new range for children.
The company confirmed it would be continuing its collaboration with TV explorer Steve Backshall. It will launch a third season of children’s clothing for Spring and Summer 2017.
Mountain Warehouse, which started with a single store in 1997, opened an additional 34 branches in 2016 and now has a total of 262, with a footprint in seven countries.
Recent openings include Lymington in Hampshire, Lewes in Sussex and a revamped store in Aviemore in Scotland.
A similar number of new stores are planned for 2017, with shop-fitters starting next week on branches in Fowey, Cornwall and Katowice, Poland.
Mountain Warehouse made pre-tax profits of £16.2m in the year to February 2016, an increase of 36 per cent on the previous year, on sales of £141.4m.
The CEO Mark Neale said the Christmas trading performance meant he was confident of delivering another set of record full-year results.
He said: “Our performance over the festive period was outstanding, putting the seal on another excellent year for the business. I’m pleased to say that we are firing on all cylinders in all our channels: our UK stores, online and internationally. Mountain Warehouse celebrates its 20th anniversary in 2017 and we continue to believe that there is plenty of life in UK high streets. We opened new stores in Lymington, Lewes, Dartmouth, Durham and Aviemore shortly before Christmas
We will continue to grow our store base, and create more jobs, in 2017.”