AB Foods says COVID won't prompt Primark online rethink: CEO

LONDON (Reuters) - Primark-owner Associated British Foods ABF.L is not rethinking the lack of an online business at the fashion retailer despite the COVID-19 crisis causing prolonged store closures, its boss said on Tuesday.

“I think that COVID has more demonstrated the strength of Primark than the weakness,” Chief Executive George Weston told Reuters.

He said Primark’s trading was strong when stores reopened after coronavirus lockdowns, while new stores were still being well received in new markets.

“What we’ve seen with Primark is when people are able to shop they prefer to shop with us than do so online,” he said.

Weston also noted that over half of Primark’s core customers did not buy anything online during lockdown, preferring to wait for stores to reopen.

“That is I think a very reassuring statistic,” he said.

Reporting by James Davey, Editing by Paul Sandle