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Revenues rise 12% at Burberry as the business prepares for 'modest' growth

Burberry has reported a 12% rise in like-for-like sales for the three months to December 31 following bumper Christmas trading - but has warned that the year ahead could see further economic uncertainty.

Retail revenue was up 14% year-on-year to £528m as a “compelling and focused” festive offer drove traffic online at the British label.

For the full year to December 31 Burberry’s operating profit rose 17.1%. In 2014 the brand is aiming for a “modest increase” from that level.

Outerwear and large leather goods contributed to half of mainline growth in the third quarter, while mens accessories and tailoring also performed well.

The business saw its strongest growth in Asia Pacific, where sales grew at double digits. In the Americas and EMEIA (Europe, Middle East, India and Africa) sales rose by high single digits.

Excluding beauty, Burberry expects underlying wholesale revenue to increase by a mid to high single-digit percentage in the six months to 31 March up from £220m in 2013.

For the full year licensing revenue, excluding £27m royalty income from fragrance and beauty, was £82m. In 2014, Burberry expects growth from this level to be “slightly positive”.

Outgoing chief executive Angela Ahrendts said: “This performance reflects continuing strong brand momentum and our team’s intense focus on retail execution, supported by a planned increase in investment in marketing, customer service offline and online and our retail portfolio.”

“At current levels, exchange rates will be a significant headwind in the second half and beyond, and the macro environment remains uncertain, but we are confident that our proven strategies will continue to deliver long-term value for shareholders.”

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