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Asos: reports 'encouraging' start to year, shares jump

( - British online clothing retailer Asos said the start of its fiscal year has been "encouraging," with top line growth above expectations.

The group said its revenue rose by 20% to over 1.1 million pounds over the four months ended 31 December, well ahead of the consensus growth forecast of 14%.

The performance suggests that the focus on improving operations and execution is delivering initial results, analysts at Liberum said.

"However, the uncertainty around the cost of achieving this growth remains," the broker pointed out.

Indeed, the group's gross margin fell 170 basis points, reflecting US duty and investment in customer acquisition, Asos said. In comparison, the consensus was expecting a 0.9 basis point drop.

Asos shares were jumping on this news - up almost 10% at 3,322 pence. They have risen over 38% over the last 12 months.

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