Bang & Olufsen sales growth boosts shares

FILE PHOTO: Bang & Olufsen's sign is seen at their flagship store in Copenhagen, Denmark, October 2, 2019. REUTERS/Andreas Mortensen

COPENHAGEN (Reuters) - Shares in Bang & Olufsen BO.CO rose as much as 13% on Thursday after the audio and visual equipment maker said its revamped strategy had helped it narrow losses and post its first revenue growth in a year.

The company said in July that it expected to return to growth in the coming financial year after a move to boost its online presence and digital sales with a focus on key European and Asian markets.

Sales in B&O, known for its exclusive TVs and speakers that sell for up to $80,000, rose 10.3% to 462 million Danish crowns ($72.9 million) in the three months to August 31.

EBIT losses narrowed to 41 million crowns from 129 million crowns a year earlier.

Its shares were up 8.2% at 15.55 Danish crowns at 0717 GMT, their highest level since June 10, though well below a peak of 85 crowns hit in January 2018.

B&O was struggling with declining sales before the coronavirus outbreak triggered lockdowns which paralysed retail sales around the globe.

But analysts at Carnegie said last week that the company may benefit from the pandemic, as consumers’ spending habits shift towards home investments.

“In a time of great uncertainty, the financial result is evidence of solid strategy execution, CEO Kristian Tear said in a statement.

“We still have a big task ahead of us in terms of executing the strategy and creating a profitable business,” Tear added.

Reporting by Nikolaj Skydsgaard and Jacob Gronholt-Pedersen; editing by David Goodman and Jason Neely