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Jaeger cashes in as luxury brands make a comeback

JAEGER yesterday posted a 16 per cent rise in annual earnings as sales of luxury goods increased following the recession.

The group, owned by a management team which also bought the luxury Aquascutum brand last year, made a pre-tax profit of £7m.

Sales were flat at £85.5m – but were up 12 per cent so far this financial year.

The company said it was planning to expand internationally and develop its internet sales.

Luxury goods groups across Europe are reporting a pick up in demand following the global downturn.

Fashion entrepreneur Harold Tillman bought Jaeger in 2003 and was joined a year later by chief executive Belinda Earl, a former boss of department store group Debenhams.

The pair are credited with taking the 126-year-old brand from English county shows to international catwalks, as well as broadening its appeal by introducing new product areas like homewares, sunglasses and fragrances.

Jaeger, with 45 of its own stores and a presence in department stores including Harrods and Selfridges, said it would continue expanding in Europe, the Middle East and North America, and would launch a new flagship online store in the autumn.

It is also launching a “Boutique Jaeger” brand – a slightly cheaper range aimed at younger customers, in the autumn. Earl said: “Continued investment in Jaeger has delivered improved profit performance, despite last year’s challenging economic environment.”