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PPR first quarter sales boosted by Gucci Group

French luxury goods group PPR reported sales up 1.2%, or 1.3% on a comparable basis, to €4.1bn (£3.5bn) for the first quarter 2010, following a strong performance by Gucci Group.

Sales across the Gucci Group brands were up 6.1% in comparable terms for the quarter. Its online sales rose by 14% on a comparable basis and accounted for 13% of total sales in the first quarter of 2010.

Sales were up at every brand that falls under the Gucci Group banner, including Gucci, Yves Saint Laurent, Bottega Veneta, Alexander McQueen, Stella McCartney and Sergio Rossi.

Gucci posted a comparable sales rise of 5.3% over the period. Western Europe, which accounted for 30% of Gucci’s sales, saw an 11% growth. PPR said Gucci’s retail sales were up 7%. Wholesale revenues were slightly up, while forward orders for autumn 10 saw a “double-digit increase” on the previous year.

Yves Saint Laurent’s sales dropped 0.7% overall, hampered by weak wholesale sales, which dropped back 19%. Yves Saint Laurent store sales for the period were up 12%.

Bottega Veneta’s comparable sales rose 11%.

Among Gucci Group’s other brands, the company said Alexander McQueen posted “exceptional growth” in the period, Stella McCartney had “remarkable sales, particularly in ready-to-wear and handbags and Sergio Rossi’s sales were mixed by region.

PPR’s sportswear brand Puma’s sales fell back 2.1% to €683.1m (£591.7m), as reported earlier today, although its pre-tax profits jumped from €2.4m (£2.1m) in 2009 to €117.8m (£102m), due in part to a far lower level of discounting.

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