Zara owner posts solid earnings, share price falls

21st September 2011, Comments 0 comments

Spanish firm Inditex, the world's biggest fashion retailer and owner of the Zara brand, reported solid half-year profits on Wednesday on expansion abroad and after launching an online retail operation.

Net profit for the February-to-July period totalled 717 million euros ($982 million), up 14.0 percent from the equivalent figure last year.

Despite the solid results, Inditex shares plummeted on the Madrid stock exchange. Inditex shares were showing a fall of 4.14 percent in early trading in an overall market down 0.60 percent.

Sales exceeded analyst expectations, rising by 12.0 percent to 6.21 billion euros, while earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation, or EBIDTA, were up 9.0 percent to 1.2 billion euros.

Inditex opened 177 new stores in the past six months including a first store in Australia.

Inditex, which also owns youth label Bershka and the upmarket Massimo Dutti brand, currently has 5,221 stors in 78 countries.

With the international expansion, Spanish sales fell to 26 percent of total sales, from 28 percent a year earlier. European sales, excepting Spain remained unchanged at 45 percent of the total and Latin America sales were flat at 12 percent.

Asian sales expanded to 12 percent of total sales from 10 percent, the company said.

© 2011 AFP

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