Runway success cheers fashion brand Burberry

Kasmira Jefford
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FASHION house Burberry said an “exceptional” performance of its spring and summer collection helped drive underlying retail sales up by 18 per cent to £339m in the first quarter.

The FTSE 100 luxury firm, which saw shares jump nearly five per cent yesterday, said outerwear and large leather goods accounted for over half the growth, while men’s accessories and tailoring also outperformed.

The success of its marketing campaigns, like those featuring David Beckham’s son Romeo, and runway shows have also lifted its performance, chief executive Angela Ahrendts said.

“Spring/Summer 2013 was a standout season driven by innovative marketing, cohesive monthly fashion groups and exceptional execution from all corporate and regional teams,” she explained.

The group’s menswear show was held in London for the first time last month, with clothes epitomising a quintessentially British style such as fisherman’s jackets and oxford shirts.

Sales at stores open more than a year were up 13 per cent, in line with expectations and ahead of an eight per cent rise in the prior fourth quarter.

By region, the group saw double-digit comparable store sales in Asia Pacific and the Americas and “high single-digit” growth in the Europe, Middle East, India and Africa.

Burberry said the merging of its beauty division was on track after the group ended its license with French company Interparfums and brought its fragrance in house earlier this year.

Seven stores were opened in the quarter including two in Shanghai, while six were closed. Burberry now has 207 stores, 326 concessions, outlets and franchises.

Ahrendts said: “Looking forward, the macro outlook remains uncertain and we will continue to focus our investment on profitable high growth opportunities by channel, region and product categories.”