Blue Nile reports weak growth in the UK


Diamond retailer posts record results but demand in the UK slows.

Blue Nile has said that sales growth in the UK was weak in its third quarter ending October 3.

The international online jewellery retailer said that sales suffered in the UK and Europe as a result of global economic concerns combined with weaker currencies compared to the US dollar.

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Total international sales at the retailer increased 5.7 percent in the quarter to US$9.3 million (£5.7 million), representing a record 14 percent of total sales. Blue Nile said that sales were strongest in Canada, Asia and the Asia-Pacific area.

Gross profit for the quarter totalled US$14.6 million (£9 million), compared with $14.8 million (£9.1 million) a year ago. As a percentage of sales, gross profit totalled 21.7 percent.

Despite specialising in diamonds, Blue Nile said that sales growth was relatively stronger in non-engagement jewellery compared with the diamond engagement category.

Blue Nile chief executive officer Diane Irvine said: "During the quarter, sales trends were uneven and reflected consumer confidence levels, which were at historic lows. Sales trends have improved in the current quarter, and we remain focused on providing an exceptional experience to our customers.

“Across the business, we are gearing up for our peak holiday season. We are prepared with what we believe is our best product assortment ever at tremendous values, and we are competitively well positioned to continue to gain market share in the industry."

Tags : Blue NileDiamondsengagement ringsJewelleryjewelry
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