Retail group Inditex reported a “strong operating performance” as net sales reached €5.7bn (£5bn) for the three months to 30 April, growing by 2% against the same period in 2017.
Gross profit increased 3% year on year to €3.3bn (£2.9bn), on EBIT of €851m (£744m), up 2%. Net income reached €668m (£587m) in the first quarter of 2018, up 2% from €654m (£575m) the previous year.
Gross margin increased 658 basis points from 58.2 % to 58.9%.
EBITDA rose by 1% against the same period last year, as Inditex reported growth in retail space and “tight control of operating expenses”.
As it enters its new financial year, store and online sales in local currencies increased by 9% from 1 May to 11 June 2018.
The group, which owns Zara, Bershka, Stradivarius, Massimo Dutti and Pull & Bear, added 63 stores worldwide across its portfolio. It also launched Zara online in Australia and New Zealand on 14 March.
Inditex chairman and CEO Pablo Isla said: “The strength of the integrated store and online model, bolstered by continued innovation, is driving solid growth and notable job creation.”
Last month Zara has unveiled its new-look digital store concept at Westfield Stratford City. It is the first Zara store globally to feature new digital technology that integrates the online and offline shopping experiences.
The store has a dedicated area for the purchase and collection of online orders on the first floor, in addition to the usual sections for women’s, men’s and kids’ lines. This online area features two automated online order collection points, serviced by a concealed area that can handle 2,400 orders simultaneously.