Hot on the heels of its underwhelming stock market flotation, Deliveroo Holdings PLC (LON:ROO) will announce its trading update for the first quarter of 2021, on Thursday. Astonishing top-line growth is a given but the question is whether growth is accelerating and if so by how much?

The food delivery group has to make hay while the sun shines as restaurants will (hopefully) be reopening soon, which will siphon off some demand for Deliveroo’s services. The controversial technology company was profitable for two quarters in a row in the second half of 2020 and likely was profitable in the first quarter but few are expecting that status to last for the rest of the year.

Analysts will be looking for guidance on full-year revenue growth and will be watching the group’s razor-thin margins to determine the direction of travel.

Hut to deliver

THG Group Plc (LON:THG) has promised to report results for 2020 and give a first-quarter trading update. In January the holding company of the digital retail giant Hut Group provided its third profit upgrade since listing in September.

The spark for this latest upgrade was the acquisition of US-based Dermstore.com in between Christmas and the New Year, coming after a strong festive showing and leading executive chair Matthew Moulding to hike his expectations for revenue growth in the new financial year to 30%-35%, from the 20%-25% guidance given in early December.

As well as being the company’s maiden full-year results as a listed company, with the extra attention this brings, the first quarter will also see if Moulding can continue his succession of guidance upgrades.

Interestingly, this series of hikes gave THG a market cap of above £8bn at the turn of the year – easily big enough for the company to gain promotion to the FTSE 100 if it wasn’t for THG being blocked from joining the blue-chip index as Moulding wanted a “golden share” in the company that gives him the power to reject hostile takeovers.

Hays investors hoping for better half

Hays PLC (LON:HAS) will be hoping that its second half is going better than its first, which saw net fee incomes drop by a quarter.

However, the firm has said it expects to resume dividends in its full-year results, so investors will be hoping this trajectory remains on track, as well as what the future holds for hiring in a post-COVID economy.

Naked Wines to reveal all

Delivering bottles of wine ordered online during lockdown? That’s surely a great business to be in right now and we’ll find out for sure on Thursday when Naked Wines Plc (LON:WINE) issues a full-year trading update.

The “problem” for Naked Wines will be matching market expectations as even the sleepiest trader will have spotted the potential for an acceleration in sales growth during lockdown, especially after the company’s half-year report in November, when it revealed an 80% year-on-year increase in revenues.

The online retailer raised its ‘central case’ growth assumptions to 55%-65% for the 12 months to the end of March, so that’s the number for it to beat.

Thursday April 15

Trading announcements: Deliveroo Holdings PLC (LON:ROO); Hays PLC (LON:HAS), Naked Wines Plc (LON:WINE), Norcros PLC (LON:NXR), Travis Perkins PLC (LON:TPK)

Finals: THG PLC (LON:THG), Epwin Group PLC (LON:EPWN), Intelligent Ultrasound Group PLC (LON:IUG), Oxford Biomedica PLC (LON:OXB), Puretech Health PLC (LON:PRTC)

FTSE 100 ex-dividends to knock 5.8 points off the index: Legal & General Group PLC (LON:LGEN), Lloyds Banking Group PLC (LON:LLOY), Barratt Developments PLC (LON:BDEV), St James’s Place PLC (LON:STJ), Standard Life Aberdeen PLC (LON:SLA)

Economic data: US retail sales, US jobless claims

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