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Zalando on track with 2025 growth plan fueled by strong customer growth in 2021

  • Exceptional full-year growth: GMV up 34.1% to 14.3 billion euros, revenue up 29.7% to 10.4 billion euros; adjusted EBIT of 468.4 million euros
  • Significant customer growth with more than 10 million new customers
  • Platform transition continues to progress well, partner share of GMV now at 30%
  • Expected 2022 GMV growth of 16-23% at 430-510 million euros adjusted EBIT
  • Membership program Zalando Plus passes the 1 million-member milestone and will double the number of Plus markets by the end of 2023
  • Advancing to a sustainable fashion platform with a net-positive impact, including a further shift from plastic to paper shipping bags

Zalando on track with 2025 growth plan fueled by strong customer growth in 2021Following a 2021 financial year with strong progress on both strategic and financial execution, Zalando continues to focus on strategic initiatives that will drive future growth. In 2021, the company grew significantly faster than expected, positioning Zalando well on track of its mid-term growth ambition to reach more than 30 billion euros Gross Merchandise Volume (GMV) by 2025.

Zalando reported GMV growth of 34.1% to 14.3 billion euros, driven by continued strong consumer demand for online offerings and increasing partner adoption of platform services. Financial performance started to normalize during the second half of 2021, as expected, given the gradual reopening of European economies. Revenue grew by 29.7% to 10.4 billion euros in 2021. Zalando achieved an adjusted EBIT of 468.4 million euros, corresponding to a margin of 4.5%.

Robert Gentz, Co-CEO at Zalando, says: “We are very pleased with our strong results, which demonstrate that we have the right strategy in place to succeed irrespective of the market environment. Our new customer growth and strategic progress in 2021 underline the immense opportunity ahead of us. Leveraging our platform business model, we are in a strong position to achieve our GMV goal of more than 30 billion euros by 2025. We would like to thank the entire Zalando team for their commitment and flawless execution working towards that goal.”

The company continues to focus on growth and expects 2022 GMV growth of 16-23% to 16.6-17.6 billion euros and revenue to grow 12-19% to 11.6-12.3 billion euros, with the aim to outperform the European online fashion segment in a volatile market environment. Zalando expects to continue to grow profitably and achieve an adjusted EBIT of 430-510 million euros. The expectations exclude a potential negative impact from the war in Ukraine.

ZALANDO DOUBLES DOWN ON STRATEGIC INITIATIVES

In 2021, Zalando gained more than 10 million new customers and significantly expanded its reach to now serve more than 48 million active customers across 23 markets, including six new markets launched over the course of last year: Croatia, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Slovakia, Slovenia. Customers ordered more than ever before with 5.2 average orders per active customer.

Zalando’s membership program, Zalando Plus, plays an important role in deepening customer relationships. The program provides customers the best service and experience Zalando has to offer in exchange for an annual fee. As a result, Plus members visit Zalando twice as often and spend three times more than non Plus customers. Zalando Plus passed the 1 million membership milestone in early 2022. After expanding the program to the Netherlands, France and Italy in 2021, Zalando will double the number of Plus markets by the end of 2023 from 4 markets currently.

With more than 5,800 brand partners and almost 7,000 stores the Partner Program and Connected Retail share now accounts for 30% of Zalando’s Fashion Store GMV, up from 24% in the prior year. As its successful platform transition supporting partners, Zalando is on its way to achieving its target of 50% of Fashion Store GMV attributed to its Partner Program and Connected Retail.

Zalando will invest further in its European logistics network to continue offering customers unmatched convenience and to support brands in driving their e-commerce growth. Today, Zalando operates one of the largest online fashion logistics networks in Europe with 12 fulfillment centers in 7 countries. The company will add four fulfillment centers to the existing network by 2023, and the total capital expenditure in 2022 is expected to range between 400 to 500 million euros. Over the next 12 months, Zalando will open its best-in-class fulfillment solutions to partners to support their direct to consumer business.

David Schröder, Chief Operating Officer at Zalando, says: “Zalando creates benefits for both our partners and customers. Our partners gain access to over 48 million active customers and our customers can easily find their favorite local and international brands. To enable strong sustainable growth in the future we will continue to invest in scaling and innovating our unique capabilities and infrastructure.”

ZALANDO ACCELERATES INITIATIVES TO LEVERAGE ITS SUSTAINABILITY STRATEGY

In 2021, Zalando made further progress towards becoming a sustainable fashion platform with a net-positive impact for people and the planet. Brand, logistic and packaging partners have joined Zalando in setting science-based targets, covering 51% of supplier-related emissions. Last year, Zalando increased its sustainability assortment to over 140,000 products compared to around 80,000 a year earlier. The sale of these articles accounted for 21.6% of the company’s GMV, up from 16% in 2020. Priorities for Zalando in 2022 will be optimizing packaging, reducing empty space in parcels, minimizing packaging waste and completing the transition of plastic to paper shipping bags. Further information can be found in the Zalando Sustainability Progress Report 2021.

David Schneider, Co-CEO at Zalando, says: ”As we grow as a company we want to use our strong position to drive positive change in the fashion industry. In 2022 we will work even harder to achieve our sustainability objectives and help customers make choices that reflect their values.”

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