Hello Philippe Benacin. Half-year results just published show increases of 29% in revenue, 29% in gross margin, 53% in operating profit and 68% in net income …In other words, a record six-month performance?
I'm not sure it was a record. However there's no doubt that it’s been a while since we last achieved such results for growth as well as for all other indicators. Results all the more noteworthy in conjunction with a significant increase in marketing and advertising spending. It was thus indeed an excellent first six months.
On that basis one might expect initial revenue and earnings guidance from the start of the year to be significantly exceeded.
Not at all. As I just indicated, substantial investments were made in advertising to boost our new product launches but also our established lines. This trend will be confirmed in the second half, a period when we traditionally spend considerably more. In our view it is more strategically sound to support our brands rather than focus on achieving higher margins at all costs. Already, our operating margin is around 13.5% for the full year.
And for sales?
We already raised guidance for revenue in the first half and based on the currently favorable euro-dollar exchange rate, we confirm our annual target for €400 million.
A final comment on the highlights of the half year period just ended?
As often the case there were many, though the development of the Coach lines, with the first men's launch, is without a doubt one of the high points. The launch of Montblanc Legend Night, Jimmy Choo's strong growth, a good start for Parfums Matières, the new Karl Lagerfeld fragrance duo, and Lanvin's renewed growth also provide grounds for satisfaction… Overall trends are thus rather positive and should lead to a good performance for the full year.