Fortnum & Mason Christmas Hamper

The classic Fortnum & Mason Christmas hamper

Luxury retailer Fortnum & Mason has reported a record trading performance over Christmas, with like-for-like sales up by 13%.

The performance of stores in Piccadilly, St Pancras International and Heathrow was measured over a five-week period ending 31 December. Online sales were up 23% on the same period last year, marking the third strong year of results since the website was comprehensively revamped in 2015.

Over 75% of sales in its flagship Piccadilly store were from domestic customers. Fortnum’s strategy has been to make British heritage a virtue, with about 82% of everything sold made in the UK and many products coming from third generation suppliers.

Pre-tax profits last year increased 23% to £7.6m, believed to be partly fuelled by a 15% rise in sales of its F&M monogrammed hampers.

“Of course we are pleased by the continuing growth across all channels, but we take great pride in the fact that at a time when the high street is under pressure, our stores, restaurants, bars and quality products are being enjoyed by our domestic customers more than ever,” said Fortnum & Mason CEO Ewan Venters.

“The high quality of customer experience we deliver in-store, and for which Fortnums is justly famous, is a big attraction for our customers,” said Venters. “In a climate of financial uncertainty, these are very encouraging results.”

The company has also launched a new apprenticeship scheme, which has 25 new entrants and has created 49 new full-time jobs.