Artificial intelligence helps profits surge at Shop Direct

Very.co.uk generated sales of more than £1 billion for the first time as parent company Shop Direct announced a 44 per cent increase in profits before tax. Liverpool-based Shop Direct grew underlying profit to £150.4 million as sales increased by 4.3 per cent to £1.86bn. The 12-month period to June 30 represented its first full financial year as a pureplay digital retailer, having ceased catalogue production in January 2015. The group, which also operates digital department stores VeryExclusive.co.uk, Littlewoods.com and LittlewoodsIreland.ie, saw an expansion in mobile transactions, which now make up 62 per cent of online sales. That was realised on the back of new features such as push notifications and touch ID to its MyVery app, which is nearing a million downloads. Orders via smartphones increased by 46 per…


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