In its second-largest acquisition, Amazon buys the company for $970 million.
Mobile commerce accounted for about 1% of sales for Argos.
The web was the only channel that grew in 2010 for Home Retail Group, one of the largest home and general merchandise chain retailers based in the United Kingdom.
Home Retail, which operates the Argos and Homebase store chains and is No. 6 in the Internet Retailer Top 300 Europe, in its recently released annual report recorded:
- For the fiscal year ended Feb. 26, web sales grew 18.3% to 2.13 billion pounds ($3.50 billion) from 1.80 billion pounds ($2.96 billion) in 2009.
- Web sales for Argos grew 8.6% to 1.51 billion pounds ($2.48 billion) from 1.39 billion pounds ($2.28 billion) in 2009.
- Web sales for Homebase grew 51.2% to 620 million pounds ($1.01 billion) from 410 million pounds ($673.9 million) in 2009.
- Total sales declined 2.6% to 5.86 billion pounds ($9.63 billion) from 6.02 billion pounds ($9.89 billion) in 2009.
- Net income declined year over year 9% to 190.9 million pounds ($313.9 million) from 209.8 million pounds ($345.0 million).
Internet Retailer calculates the web accounted for 36.3% of total sales in 2010 compared with 29.9% in 2009.
The web remains the company’s growth channel, says CEO Terry Duddy. “We have developed highly successful Internet and mobile channels to meet customer demand,” says Duddy.
Home Retail says heavy visitor traffic to Argos.co.uk and Homebase.co.uk and a growing mobile commerce program contributed to higher e-commerce sales.
- The Argos and Homebase e-commerce sites generated more than 400 million visits.
- Mobile sales accounted for about 1%, or 151 million pounds ($248.3 million) of total revenue for the Argos brand.
- More than 1.3 million shoppers have downloaded the brand’s iPhone app.