H&M reports good Christmas as starts making clothes in Africa

City A.M. Reporter
SWEDISH budget fashion retailer Hennes & Mauritz (H&M) said yesterday its total sales rose 10 per cent in December, right in line with market expectations.

H&M said it would no longer report comparable sales for stores open at least a year, saying total sales were more relevant.

December is the first month of H&M’s fiscal first quarter.

H&M’s results came as its chief executive revealed it had started producing some clothing in sub-Saharan Africa.

The move could reduce its reliance on countries like Bangladesh where election unrest has disrupted the garment sector.

H&M has already started producing clothes on a small scale on the continent and Africa would complement the company’s production in Bangladesh, China and Cambodia, Hennes & Mauritz chief executive officer Karl-Johan Persson told Swedish business daily Dagens Industri.

“I think that there is great potential in sub-Saharan Africa when it comes to production,” Persson said.

“We have started producing on a small scale in Ethiopia and we will see how it goes. It seems very interesting.”