Zalando reports strong growth in 2018, strengthens management board

Zalando has announced that the company finished 2018 on a high note, growing revenues in the fourth quarter by 24.6 percent to 1.7 billion euros (1.9 million dollars) at an adjusted EBIT of 117.8 million euros (1,271.5 million dollars). For the full year, the company’s revenues grew by 20 percent to 5.4 billion euros and adjusted EBIT reached 173.4 million euros (197.2 million dollars). The company also announced the addition of David Schröder as CFO and Jim Freeman as CTO to its management board, which also comprises of three Co-CEOs David Schneider, Robert Gentz and Rubin Ritter.

Commenting on the trading performance, Zalando’s Co-CEO Rubin Ritter said in a statement: “2018 had its challenges, but we focused our efforts in the fourth quarter to pull off a strong finish to the year. Our performance in the fourth quarter gives us confidence that our long-term growth plans are well on track.”

Highlights of Zalando’s results

The company added that growth was fuelled by 26.4 million active customers compared to 23.1 million in 2017 placing 116.2 million orders compared to 90.5 million orders throughout the year, while traffic increased to 3.1 billion visits against 2.6 billion in 2017. In the fourth quarter, Zalando said, it witnessed close to one billion visits and 1.3 million new active customers - the highest quarterly active customer increase in five years. In 2018, Zalando grew gross merchandise value (GMV) by 21.1 percent to 6.6 billion euros (7.5 billion dollars).

In 2019, the company aims to grow GMV by 20-25 percent and revenues at the low end of this range. Zalando expects to continue to grow profitably and achieve an adjusted EBIT of 175-225 million euros (199 to 256 million dollars). The company will continue to invest into logistics and technology and plans capital expenditure of around 300 million euros.

In 2018, the company said, over 250 partners integrated with the Zalando Partner Program, which accounted for about 10 percent of Zalando’s GMV. Zalando aims to increase this share up to 40 percent by 2023/2024.

Zalando strengthens management board

Zalando further said that to achieve its targets, it will adapt the responsibility of its three Co-CEOs and extend the management board to five members as of April 1, 2019.

While Co-CEO David Schneider will continue to work closely with brand partners and lead Zalando’s fashion offer, Co-CEO Robert Gentz will take on marketing and sales, and continue to be responsible for human resources and third CO-CEO Rubin Ritter will assume responsibility for strategy.

Additionally, the company announced that David Schröder, who has been with Zalando for nine years, will join the management board as Chief Financial Officer (CFO) and take on responsibility for finance and operations. Jim Freeman, currently senior vice president engineering, who joined Zalando in April 2018 from Amazon, where he was responsible for launching, growing, and scaling Prime Video and for launching communication experiences for Alexa and Echo devices, will join the management board as Chief Technology Officer (CTO), assuming responsibility for Zalando’s product and technology strategy and execution.

Commenting on the management changes, Lothar Lanz, Chairman of the Zalando supervisory board, added: “We, the supervisory board, are excited to welcome two high-profile experts to the management board with an outstanding track record in their respective fields. The revised set-up tightens the focus of each member and secures a well-rounded view of the Zalando business on the management board.”

Picture:Zalando media gallery


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