Founded in 2000 by Nick Robertson and Quentin Griffiths, the London-based ASOS sells over 850 brands as well as its own range of clothes, cosmetics and homeware. It was a pioneer of etail in the UK as well as one of the first companies to truly realise the potential of content + commerce, launching its own magazine and using social media to drive sales long before it was a mainstream marketing activity.
In 2010, the company created ASOS Marketplace, a website which provides a platform for more than 700 boutiques where customers can find unique brands and vintage fashion. With 713 factories around the world, ASOS ships to over 200 countries, including the UK, US and Europe.
In 2017, the company developed an Ethical Trade Strategy that focuses on three main areas: ethical trading, sustainable sourcing and animal welfare. Priorities include transparency, improving wages, health and safety, reducing modern slavery risks and stopping child labour.
The business reached the £1bn sales mark, some 15 years after its launch and in 2018 sales hit £2.4bn, representing a 26% uplift on prior year. However tough trading from Black Friday and Christmas 2018 and disruption in the UK, due to the introduction of a new warehouse, mean growth will be around 15% this year. Lowly by ASOS standards but by industry standards, it’s a significant outperformance of the market.