Niche retailer in favour with plus-size share rise

Targeting older and more amply proportioned shoppers seems to be paying off for the home shopping group N Brown.

Shares in the company behind Simply Be, Jacamo and Marisota leapt 13.8 per cent yesterday after its half-year returns impressed the City. Although profit for the half-year to September fell 4.5 per cent to £42m, that was better than anticipated, and traders took the view that the company is proving more resilient than most.

Brown said total revenue increased 4.39 per cent to £379.3m, while like-for-like sales were up 3.79 per cent. Women's clothing sales fell 29 per cent in the first half, although there were increases in all other product categories.