Jul 21, 2021

Straight-talking Next offers few certainties but wins on clarity

Next invites the question at least once a quarter with market communications that are models of clarity. Surface calm risks underplaying Next's dramatic and potentially messy process of reinvention. Online accounts for more than half of Next's group sales yet its estate has hardly changed in a decade. The hunt for online growth draws Next into unfamiliar territory. Though management quality alone can justify Next's valuation premium to UK peers, at about 14 times upgraded earnings expectations, the process of navigating between its possible futures will be unavoidably messy.

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