Otto Group focusing on technological innovations

E-commerce balance sheet 2019 presented - new digital expert responsible for tech strategy
12 February 2020

The Otto Group will close the 2019/2020 fiscal year ending February 29, 2020 with global online revenues of around EUR 8.1 billion over EUR 7.7 billion in the 2018/2019 fiscal year, according to preliminary forecasts. The retail and services group generated revenues of approximately EUR 5.6 billion over EUR 5.3 billion in the previous year on the German e-commerce market. Revenues at focus companies including OTTO, Crate&Barrel, Bonprix, the Witt Group, About You, and the Mytoys Grou increased around 11 per cent over 2018/2019 and is further indication that the focused growth strategy adopted by the Otto Group is paying off, particularly in online retail. Dr. Hanna Huber, Group Vice President Technology Strategy and Governance, announced plans Monday (February 10, 2020), to expand the group-wide tech strategy.

Switch to fully digitalised trading and services group

Sebastian Klauke, Member of the Otto Group Executive Board, E-Commerce, Technology, Business Intelligence and Corporate Ventures, said: “This very healthy e-commerce growth at our focus companies shows we are on the right track and that our efforts are paying off. The technological challenges and demands on us as a retailer are major – and will stay that way. Considering this, our sustained growth in the face of fierce competition makes me optimistic about our future.“

Dr. Hanna Huber  © Otto-Pressebild
Dr. Hanna Huber      © Otto- Pressebild

Otto as a connected company

Forecasts indicate that the single company Otto increased its online revenues by up to 8 per cent in 2019/2020. Otto experienced the best-ever Christmas business period in the company’s history last December. Otto and ECE, the European market leader in the shopping centre business, recently presented the new Connected Commerce business concept creating a unique, unified cross-channel combination of over-the-counter and online retail, said Dr. Müller-Wünsch, Member of the OTTO Management Board Technology (CIO). Launched last Augtst, the concept presently involves around 20 trading partners are connected. “We are also considering how we can connect more and more households with our online platform,” Müller-Wünsch added. This comes after the introduction of the “Otto ready” orders or Internet of Things (IOT) connection in 2019.

About You

About You continues to generate unabated growth, said Sebastian Betz, Co-CEO of About You. The company is forecast to have raised revenues by more than 60 per cent to over EUR 740 million in 2019/2020. About You already ranks among Europe’s top three online fashion shops and does online business online in ten European markets. Betz stressed: “We are not only a retailer, but also offer a complex IT product that digitizes strolls in cities.” As a white-label brand, About You Cloud provides e-commerce infrastructure for retailers – from goods management, customer area and payment to logistics. About You is considered Hamburg’s first unicorn.

Otto Group

Founded in Hamburg in 1949, the Otto Group is a globally active retail and services group with around 52,560 employees in 30 major company groups and does business in over 30 countries in Europe, North and South America, and Asia. Its business activities are grouped into three segments: Multichannel Retail, Financial Services, and Service. In the 2018/19 fiscal year, the Otto Group generated revenues of EUR 13.4 billion. With online revenues of approximately EUR 7.7 billion, the Otto Group is one of the world’s largest online retailers. The group’s particular strength is its broad market presence with differentiated product and service offers to diverse customer target groups in almost all of the world’s relevant economic regions.