The Slurp Group bucked the general trend in UK retailing in Q1 2011 by reporting a strong start to the trading year. Q1 revenues were up 261% over the same period in 2010. Especially pleasing was the fact that revenues rose 94% over the traditionally strong Q4 2010 period. This underlines the fact that Slurp’s growth remains secular, and is not yet affected by seasonal variation. Q1 revenue growth maintained the 250% yoy rate seen in Q4 2010.
The Q1 2011 performance was bolstered by an excellent January in the Fine Wines (Slurpfinewines.com) division. Growth also continues to be driven by the company’s Asian division (Slurp.asia) under the energetic leadership of Managing Director Tom Chamberlain. Slurp.asia had a particularly strong March as our Hong Kong and Chinese customers replenished stocks following the Chinese New Year in February. The appointment of one of Slurp’s original founders, Nico Sunnucks, to the newly created position of Chief Operating Officer has given the Group a much sharper global focus in its logistics processes as it continues its international expansion. Although no new brands were rolled out in Q1, a lot of background work was completed and a number of new brands (both domestic in the UK and overseas) will be appearing in the next two quarters.
Much of the growth in the UK retail arm (branded Slurp.co.uk) was the result of continuing innovation in the Slurp offering. In Q1 we swept away all restrictions on order size for our 1,500 ‘Slurp Express’ products offered for next day delivery. This change sets Slurp apart from almost all of its main competitors and has had a significant impact on the level of smaller orders – often for just one bottle.
Slurp continued to make numerous hires in Q1 2011 in support of its aggressive growth strategy. A new Financial Controller has joined the Group (Susan Lummis) and a dedicated Communications Group has been created under the leadership of Emily Acha Derrington. Slurp has also completed a major reorganisation of its IT division with a new outsourced team formed in the Indian capital of Delhi to give it the scope to increase its development substantially in the remainder of 2011.
Dr Jeremy Howard
Chief Executive Officer