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French Connection European trading comes in flat Wednesday, 15th May 2013
Photo credit: My Retail Media
French Connection said it saw a strong performance in the early weeks of the year, which softened in March but has improved again recently, in line with the same trend seen in the market as a whole.
"We are seeing progress from the initiatives that were instigated following the retail review last year and expect the impact of these to grow as the year progresses. Gross margin levels were slightly lower than last year," French Connection said in a company update.
The fashion retailer said UK/Europe wholesales revenues continued to be below last year’s levels, as a result of lower forward orders and reduced in-season business.
Elsewhere there were more positive signs for the brand, with retail revenue in North American up 5 per cent for the quarter thanks to a higher level of promotional sales. The group continued to perform well in Asia, despite the retail market slow-down in China and Hong Kong, as it noted a modest improvement in profit for the period.
Looking ahead, French Connection remained positive that the overall trend had improved with forward orders for the Winter 2013 season in line with those from 2012.
Battle for Hermès continues as LVMH is investigated Monday, 1st April 2013
Photo credit: My Retail Media
An investigating magistrate has been appointed to examine the conditions under which LVMH has been increasing its share in the historic French fashion brand Hermès.
LVMH, a multinational goods conglomerate which owns more than 40 luxury brands including Fendi, Louis Vuitton, Dior and Moët et Chandon, is accused of building up its stake in Hermès in secret, and now holds a 22.6 per cent share in the iconic handbag and accessories brand.
Having purchased a 17.1 per cent stake in Hermès back in 2010, LVMH owner and chief executive Bernard Arnault insisted the move was "friendly" and that the luxury group had "no intentional of a tender offer" for the family-owned French brand.
Since then the French markets watchdog, AMF, has launched an investigation into the share build-up, and stated in October 2012 that it did not believe LVMH had engaged in insider dealing or share price manipulation but referred the case to its sanctions committed, which is due to be decided by the summer. According to a report by the Telegraph, LVMH has now filed a suit against Hermès for "slander, balckmail and unfair competition", accusing the Birkin-maker of making libellous remarks. Hermès has now branded the move as a "decoy launched just when a magistrate has been named".
Speaking to French paper Le Monde, Hermès chief executive Patrick thomas said the pari's "business models are incompatible", adding: “We will use all the legal means at our disposal to make LVMH leave Hermès’ capital or reduce its participation.”
LVMH’s Bernard Arnault could face tax scrutiny Monday, 24th December 2012
Bernard Arnault at the A/W 2009/2010 Jean-Paul Gaultier show. Photo credit: nicogenin
Bernard Arnault, chairman and chief executive of LVMH, could see his taxes come under scrutiny after it emerged the business magnate is seeking Belgian citizenship.
Belgian tax authorities could hand Arnault’s file to Paris counterparts for closer scrutiny of any Brussel-based companies linked to LVMH.
According to reports by French paper De Tijd on Saturday, Belgian’s minister for fraud prevention John Crombez has said any information on local “mailbox companies” held by Europe’s richest man should be shared with Paris.
"If Bernard Arnault is working with pure mailbox companies in Belgium we should signal this to French tax authorities," the anti-fraud minister was quoted by Reuters as saying.
In response, LVMH told Reuters it was "surprised" by the press reports and denied any wrongdoing.
"The companies of Groupe Arnault and LVMH have very real economic activities in Belgium, where some of them have been based for several decades," the company said in an emailed statement.
"All of their activities are fully compliant with Belgian tax legislation as well as international law."
Louis Vuitton names new CEO Tuesday, 18th December 2012
Photo credit: Louis Vuitton
According to a report by WWD, owners LVMH have named Michael Burke, current chief executive of Bulgari, as the luxury fashion brand’s new boss.
Speaking to WWD, LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton board member Antoine Arnault said Constans' condition “does not allow him to fulfil his duties as ceo.”
Having spent over thirty years working for the luxury conglomerate, Burke will take up his new position on Wednesday.
Hamleys sees profit skyrocket with new stores in sight Friday, 7th December 2012
Photo credit: Hamleys
Hamleys on Thursday announced a 250 per cent leap in pre-tax profits as the famous retailer continued to expand its presence in the UK and overseas.
Pre-tax profits for the year to 31 March rose more than 250 per cent to £2.3 million for the toy specialist, with sales in the UK and Ireland up 3.8 per cent on last year in total and 6.3 per cent on a like-for-like basis.
With its flagship Regent Street store considered a major attraction for London tourists, Hamleys is said to be planning to further expand its presence overseas, adding eight stores outside of the UK in the past year.
The results come just three months after French rival Ludendo bought Hamleys for £60 million from Landsbanki in September. Trading across 300 stores in Europe and with a turnover in excess of £500 million, Ludendo’s operation stretches across Europe and North Africa, leaving it well versed in international expansion.
French Connection Q3 revenue comes in flat Wednesday, 21st November 2012
French Conneciton AW 2012 campaign. Photo credit: French Connection
UK-based fashion brand French Connection said like-for-like revenue for its third quarter came in flat compared to the same time a year earlier after a sharp decline seen in the first half of the year.
In a trading announcement on Wednesday, the group said its UK/Europe retail business had improved during the period, although the market as a whole remains inconsistent.
French Connection, which trades both in standalone stores in the UK, US and Canada as well as wholesale and franchise operations on a global scale, said UK/ Europe wholesales revenues continued to be below last year after lower forward orders and reduced in-season business.
"Group profit before tax for the third quarter was broadly in-line with our internal expectations but as ever the overall outcome for the year is dependent on the retail selling season over Christmas and New Year," French Connection said in a company statement.
Having concluded a review of its UK/Europe retail business, the group added:"We remain confident that the initiatives being implemented and tight cost management will result in a steady and significant improvement in the revenue and gross margins in the business and will therefore have a positive impact on group profitability across the next two financial years."
Diptyque signs for Leadenhall Market Thursday, 2nd August 2012
Photo credit: Diptyque
The luxury Parisian perfumer has signed on another store in London, as it looks to bring its cult French fragrances to the British capital.
Diptyque is set to open the doors to a brand new shop in the City’s historic Leadenhall Market. Having completed in mid-June, the perfumer will be looking to begin trading within the next few months. It will be Diptyque’s furthest venture east so far, having already established stores in Marylebone, Brook Street and Westbourne Grove.
CWM retail property advisers acted on behalf of the Landlord Corporation of London.
JD Sports adds more stores to French expansion Tuesday, 3rd July 2012
Photo credit: JD Sports
JD Sports has revealed details of its French expansion strategy as it adds another Parisian store to its portfolio.
The sports retailer has leased a new store in the Bay 2 shopping centre in Paris, set to open in February 2013.
Cushman & Wakefield have been given sole instruction for the company’s French expansion plans, with the major cities of Marseille, Strasbourg and Toulouse also said to be on the retailer’s roll-out hit list.
JD Sports has recently signed new stores in three shopping centres near Paris, adding Aéroville, So Ouest and Villeneuve-La-Garenne to its French portfolio, along with its existing stores in Parinor and Carré Sénart.
The sportswear retailer, which operates nearly 500 stores across England and Ireland, opened its new flagship store in Rouen’s Saint Sever shopping centre last Saturday 30 June.
Hermes announces CEO changes Tuesday, 29th May 2012
Photo credit: Hermes Spring Summer 2012 campaign
The historic French luxury group has announced Axel Dumas will become joint chief executive of the company in June 2013, working alongside current CEO Patrick Thomas.
PPR buoyed by luxury sales Thursday, 26th April 2012
Photo credit: Stella McCartney Spring Summer 2012 campaign
French retail conglomerate PPR posted a rise in first quarter revenues on Wednesday, thanks to strong luxury sales which managed to soften the effects of slower trading at its retail outlet Fnac and sportswear company Puma.
After taking out acquisitions and currency fluctuations, sales at PPR’s luxury division grew 17.8 per cent, thanks to strong growth in China and a thriving tourism trade in Europe and the US.