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Clipper rides the e-commerce wave

by LLB Editor
25th Aug 21 10:37 am

The accelerated shift to buying goods and services online is music to the ears of Clipper Logistics. It has experienced a sharp increase in sales and profit thanks to doing more work for existing customers, winning new clients and gaining scale in areas beyond its historical focus on the retail sector.

Clipper was smart to recognise years ago the importance of handling returns from online orders. We may all be buying more goods via our mobile phones or laptops, but the volume of goods sent back to retailers has also been creeping up.

“During the height of the pandemic, there was a dip in returns activities among the likes of the major fashion retailers as consumers were reluctant to keep going to the Post Office to send back items, but this will no doubt revert to the previous trend as life gets back to normal,” said AJ Bell’s Danni Hewson.

“A smart business won’t limit itself to a finite pool of clients, hence why Clipper has been pushing hard to expand beyond retail. The latest financial results show good progress in the heathcare industry. Equally, they also show geographical expansion beyond the UK with progress in mainland Europe.

“Costs have understandably gone up. A growing business must spend money to make money, and the logistics sector has seen considerable wage inflation due to fierce competition for drivers.

“There are a lot of moving parts to Clipper as its operations are not simply about putting stuff on a truck to deliver to the customer, and then taking items back that aren’t wanted. The hallmarks of a strong business include the ability to run an efficient business, capture opportunities to make more money from clients, and keep moving forward with new initiatives. Clipper seems to have all these traits.

“Shareholders have been richly rewarded with the share price having doubled in the past 12 months and there is news of a 14.4% increase in the total full year dividend.”

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