Zara Spanish owner Inditex says global expansion plans on track

City A.M. Reporter
ZARA owner Inditex, the world’s largest clothing retailer, showed signs of leaving behind months of tepid sales growth yesterday as a budding European recovery boosted pre-Christmas trading and it said global expansion plans remained on track.

Inditex, which also operates brands including teen label Bershka and upmarket Massimo Dutti, has struggled this year to match a sparkling 2012, when its ability to push out small collections using a slick supply chain proved particularly successful.

The company, which has 6,249 stores worldwide, said while net profit in the nine months to October was flat, sales growth had accelerated to 10 per cent in the first six weeks of the fourth quarter, the run-up to Christmas, from eight per cent in the first nine months.

Inditex chairman Pablo Isla said “global space growth is on track” and that it would add between eight per cent and 10 per cent of net new selling space in 2013, despite a strategy to shut smaller stores while opening or refurbishing larger outlets.