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LVMH annual profits edge up

LVMH, the luxury goods owner of brands including Louis Vuitton, Fendi and Céline, has reported that net profit edged up 0.4% to €3.44bn (£2.8bn) during 2013.

The Paris-based company said profit from recurring operations rose to €6.021m (£4.95m), an increase of 2% on 2012.

Sales for the year rose 4% to €29.1bn (£23.9bn) in 2013, an increase of 4% on the previous year. On an organic basis, taking out acquisitions and exchange rate fluctuations, sales were up 8%.

Paris-based LVMH said organic sales at its fashion and leather unit jumped 5% in 2013, while profit from recurring operations fell 4%.

Operating margin reached 21%.

LVMH said over the year Louis Vuitton “maintained its exceptional level of profitability while continuing its quest for excellence with regard to its products as well as its distribution”. It cited the Capucines model in leather and the W bag both as strong sellers.

Over at Fendi, the business said the handbag brand had continued to focus on its high end products and the “qualitative expansion” of its distribution network. It said Céline enjoyed a remarkable performance, reaching a new record in its sales.

LVMH chairman and chief executive Bernard Arnault said: “2013 saw another excellent performance from LVMH despite exchange rate volatility and slower growth in the European markets. Profit from recurring operations exceeded €6 billion for the first time. A significant event during the year was the acquisition of Loro Piana, a company famous for its unrivalled work with cashmere and rare textiles, and with which we share the same values of family and craftsmanship.

“All our brands have proven to be exceptionally dynamic. Looking beyond the appeal of our brands, it is the talent of our teams and their motivation that enables us to so effectively execute our strategy. In 2014, LVMH intends to further strengthen its global leadership position in high quality products by relying on its sound, long-term strategy.”

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