Shares in Wayfair gained more than 22 per cent to an all-time intraday high of $63.25 after the US online furniture retailer beat expectations on revenue growth, citing investments in its proprietary software as a leg-up on its brick-and-mortar based rivals.
The jump, bringing the group to a market capitalisation of nearly $5.7bn, was the biggest one-day gain since 2015.
“Our investment in a proprietary logistics network customised for furniture and decor is paying off as we continue to increase sales conversion through faster delivery and greater customer satisfaction,” said Niraj Shah, chief executive, co-founder and co-chairman. “With technology and innovation as the backbone of our business, we feel confident that we have built a category-leading retail brand that is exceptionally well positioned for long-term growth and continued success.”
The site for “a zillion things home” reported a 29 per cent increase in total revenue to $961m as the number of active customers and orders from repeat customers grew more than 45 and 53 per cent year-over-year, respectively. The metric beat revenue expectations of $937m in the first quarter of 2017. However, the group, in its growing pains, continues to operate at a loss.
Net loss was $56.5m, or 66 cent per share, down from a loss of $41.2m in the period last year. The group’s investments in supply-chain initiatives and expanding its international business has exacerbated losses on the group’s already-slim profit margins. Its flagship website’s product catalogue is based on wholesale prices, while its four other websites, which include AllModern and Dwell Studio, hit across the price-point spectrum.
“The home category is driven by visual imagery and discovery with customers responding most positively to an inspirational shopping experience,” Mr Shah said. “We are very pleased to report strong momentum in the first quarter of 2017.”