New designs at Burberry drive sales up by 13%

Wed, Apr 14, 2004, 01:00

British fashion house Burberry reported a 13 percent rise in second-half sales this morning as
its new ranges of colourful fashion cut a dash in a resurgent global luxury goods market.

The 150-year-old firm, whose trademark beige check still numbers among the top sellers of the revitalised brand, said the powerful top-line growth was in line with its financial goals for the year ended March 31st.

 "The outstanding response to our womenswear designs and use of colour throughout the product lines was a key catalyst across the business. This performance is consistent with expectations for the financial year," chief executive Ms Rose Marie Bravo said in a statement.

Burberry, which is due to report its results on May 24th, made an EBITA profit of £116.7 million sterling for the previous year. Underlying sales growth, which is calculated at constant exchange rates, came in at 15 percent for the six months to end-March, with retail sales up 12 per cent on an underlying basis driven by what the company called "accelerated" growth in the fourth quarter.

Wholesale revenues - largely sales to department stores - were also strongly ahead, rising 16 per cent on an underlying basis, while licensing revenues at constant currencies increased 21 percent.

Burberry used its second-half trading statement to map out some of its plans for the new financial year, which include opening seven stores and expanding existing stores.

In all, retail selling space is expected to grow by eight percent, following a 12 per cent rise in the past financial year.