ASOS, Fevertree, PZ Cussons and the week’s other big news
Two of AIM’s most prominent success stories of recent years have served disappointing news for investors. On 18 July online fashion retailer ASOS (ASC:AIM) set in motion another decline in its share price towards the £20 mark as it warned on profit for the second time in the space of a year.
Bringing forward its third quarter trading statement from the originally slated date (23 Jul), ASOS blamed growing pains arising from its ongoing warehouse transformation programmes in Berlin and Atlanta for its weak trading.
Pre-tax profit is now expected to be in the £30m to £35m range. That is significantly down from previous forecasts of £55m and factors in warehouse transition and restructuring costs.
On 23 July Fevertree Drinks (FEVR:AIM) came under pressure as its first half sales growth slowed in the UK from 73% a year ago to just 5%. More promisingly US sales were up 31%.
Having enjoyed a gravity-defying run following its 2014 stock market listing, the shares are more than 50% off the all-time highs marked in 2018 at £20.21.
Consumer goods firm and Imperial Leather maker PZ Cussons (PZC) has a big clean up job to do as it effectively issued yet another profit warning linked to problems in its Nigerian business.
The company is not sitting on its hands in the face of a double-digit drop in profit and a bearish outlook. It has pledged to ‘act at pace’ and focus on its core brands and geographies.
Elsewhere, Metro Bank (MTRO) enjoyed a happier time as it confirmed speculation that it was considering the sale of a loan portfolio (22 July). The market welcomed the more cautious approach, marking the shares slightly higher to the 500p mark.