Burberry Group plc reports on trading for the six months ended 31 March 2003.
� Total revenues increased by 22%, 15% underlying*
� Retail sales rose 30% on an underlying basis driven by new and existing stores
� Wholesale sales increased by 6% on an underlying basis
� Licensing revenue increased by 9% on an underlying basis
*Underlying figures are calculated at constant exchange rates and exclude the impact of the Asia acquisitions. Burberry acquired the operations of its primary distributors in Asia outside of Japan in January 2002 and July 2002 (the 'Asia acquisitions').
Commenting on the trading results, Rose Marie Bravo, Chief Executive, stated, 'We are pleased to report that as a result of Burberry's strong trading performance in the second half, the company has more than achieved the 2002/03 revenue objective set at the time of the IPO. These results were driven by growth in key product categories, targeted regions and selected distribution channels. Moving into the new financial year, we remain confident in our strategies while approaching the volatile and uncertain trading environment with appropriate caution.'
Total revenues in the period increased by 22% (24% at constant exchange rates), or 15% on an underlying* basis (i.e. at constant exchange rates and excluding the impact of the Asia acquisitions) compared to the six months ended 31 March 2002.
On an underlying basis, retail sales in the second half increased by 30%, driven by contributions from newly opened stores and sales gains at existing stores. Total retail sales increased 55%, boosted by the contribution from stores and concessions added as part of the Asia acquisitions.
In the fourth quarter retail sales increased by 28% on an underlying basis and 46% in total. During March, geopolitical and health-related factors increasingly affected performance as the month progressed, particularly in the UK and Hong Kong markets.
Following the seven store openings during the second half, in the current financial year Burberry plans to add approximately eight stores and two concessions, increasing net retail selling area by approximately 10%.
Total wholesale sales increased by 6% on an underlying basis, 4% reported, during the second half. This growth was tempered by the acceleration of deliveries into the first half compared to the prior year, as previously discussed. Over the full Spring/Summer 2003 season, Burberry continues to expect high single digit wholesale volume growth.
Total licensing revenues in the second half increased by 9% on an underlying basis, 4% reported. As anticipated, this gain primarily reflects modest volume gains and increases in certain royalty rates in Japan. Strong sales increases by global product licensees also contributed to this gain.