Inspecs reports record sales for 2023

The growth in sales was achieved against a backdrop of subdued demand in Europe and loss of sales due to competitor acquisitions

A pair of pink and grey sunglasses balance on top of a pair of mint green and brown spectacles, with botanical graphics on either side

Inspecs Group saw an increase in sales for 2023, though the eyewear manufacturer also encountered a “disappointing” end to the year and slow start to 2024.

Reporting results for the year ended 31 December 2023, the group saw revenue of £203.3 million, an increase compared to the £201m recorded in 2022.

The group also reported its revenue on a constant exchange rate basis was £200.7m for 2023.

Gross profit was up 4.7% to £103.5m, while adjusted underlying EBITDA was up 16.1% to £18m, and profit before tax reached £0.2m.

Richard Peck, chief executive officer of Inspecs Group, commented: “The group delivered record sales in 2023 with an increased number of frames sold, despite a slower than expected end to the year.”

Net debt excluding leasing reduced by £3.4m to £24.2m, the group shared, and cash flows from operating activities was up £7m to £16.9m.

Inspecs is seeing increased distribution of brands to key accounts and independent markets, Peck said. He added that: “Whilst consumer markets in Europe remain subdued, our businesses are continuing to perform well.”

Inspecs’ frames and optics division saw growth of £5.4m in revenue and “significant increase” in operational performance.

Peck explained that this performance comes “despite the loss of sales to Grand Vision, following its acquisition by EssilorLuxottica,” along with “an adjustment in buying patterns by our major global retailers in 2023 caused by the effect of COVID-19, particularly affected our manufacturing business in Asia.”

Construction of Inspecs’ new 8000 square meter manufacturing facility has been completed and is preparing for initial production later in the year.

Peck shared: “The manufacturing division is now poised for further growth in the second half of 2024.”

The lens manufacturing business, Norville, is seeing month–on–month growth, the group shared, including significant new independent accounts and a new key account for 2024.

“Our group operates in a resilient and growing market, and we continue to refine our business model and our strategy to deliver sustained and profitable growth,” Peck commented.

“After a disappointing end to 2023 and a slow start to 2024, the recent trend has been more encouraging,” he shared, adding: “Current momentum in the business supports delivery of market expectations for 2024 and I am confident that the group is well positioned for continued success.”

“We are excited about our future and look forward to sharing more achievements in the coming year,” Peck said.

In a statement included in the report, executive chairman, Robin Totterman, wrote that, for 2024, Inspecs’ focus will remain on enhancing operational effectiveness while driving revenue growth through collaborations.