Online retailer Kogan.com just smashed its earnings

Ruslan Kogan. Image: supplied.

Online retailing pioneer Ruslan Kogan’s Kogan.com is smashing its prospectus predictions for earnings in its first year of listing, posting pro forma trading EBITDA of $7.3 million in the first half of FY17.

The prospectus forecast a full year profit of $6.9 million for its first year of listed operation.

Pro forma net profit after tax for the six months more than doubled on the previous year to $3.7 million, also beating the full year prospectus forecast of $2.5 million.

The online purelplay retailer will pay its first dividend, of 3.9 cents per share, fully franked, as a result.

In issuing a dividend, Kogan.com has beaten bigger, high-profile rivals such as Amazon and Jack Ma’s Alibaba to the punch.

The eponymous founder and CEO said: “We are pleased to deliver results for our shareholders that exceed full year prospectus earnings forecasts and demonstrate that we are on track to continue to build the Kogan.com business in line with our long term business strategy”.

Kogan.com will upgrade its EBITDA after revenue grew by 37.3% to $143.9 million in first-half FY17, compared to the same period a year earlier.

Pro forma trading EBITDA is now estimated at between $10.5 million and $11.5 million for FY17.

The business says it now has an active customer base of 830,000 people, up 18.2% in six months and 37% in 2016.

But today’s report offers no insight into how the Dick Smith side of the business is performing after Kogan purchased the brand for $2.61 million following the collapse of the retail chain.

Gross margin for Kogan.com was 18% — beating the prospectus forecast by 2.8 percentage points. The company says investing in systems and analytics, as well as strong growth in Kogan Mobile and “precision purchasing” for Private Label inventory helped increase the margin.

At December 31, the business had a net cash position of $26.5 million and inventory levels of $42.4 million, saying 90% of that stock is less than 90 days old.

Last year Kogan and his business partner and CFO David Shafer floated the business, raising $50 million at $1.80 a share, while retaining just over half the company and pocketing $7.5 million cash from the listing.

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