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Mulberry confident about the long-term as full-year profits and revenue grow

Mulberry recorded pre-tax profits of £36m for the year to end March 31, according to preliminary results posted today.

The British luxury brand saw pre-tax profits swell 54% from £23.3m in 2011 to £36m this year. Total revenues soared 38% from £121.6m last year to £168.5m. International sales were £65.2 million, 61% up on the prior year, and gross margin increased to 66.2% - up from 65.4% in 2011.

Across the brand’s retail division, sales from Mulberry’s own stores, department store concessions and online increased 36% on the previous year to £99.7m. On a like-for-like basis, this was up 26%. 

UK retail sales in the business’ 45 stores and department store concessions increased for the year by 30% to £77.2m – 27% on a like-for-like basis.  Mulberry opened a store in Westfield Stratford in December, ahead of the Olympics.

Online sales grew 58% to £14.5m during the year, accounting for 9% of group sales.

The opening of a New York flagship on Spring Street helped boost US retail sales to £5.4m – growth of 69% on the previous year. On a like-for like basis, this was up 20%.     

European retail sales - from France and the Netherlands - were £2.6m, up 53% compared to the prior year, 7% on a like-for-like basis. This performance was boosted by the opening of a store in Amsterdam during November and an outlet store in Roermond in March.

Across the wholesale division, Asia performed particularly well, with sales growing 70% to £25.1m. Asia-Pacific has become Mulberry’s largest geographical segment for wholesale sales – making up more than a third (36%) of its wholesale business.

Wholesale shipments reached £68.8m, up 43% on the previous year.  

The company has finished its factory extension, increasing UK production by 30% and creating 60 jobs. The retailer plans to build a second factory in Somerset, doubling UK capacity and creating 300 jobs.

Mulberry chairman, Godfrey Davis, said in a statement:  

“This year has seen us deliver another strong set of results and we have performed well against expectations.

“While the current economic conditions make the short-term trading outlook more challenging in some markets, we remain confident about Mulberry’s long-term future.  We continue to focus on developing our business internationally, opening new stores and building the foundations for long term growth.

“The investment in a second factory in the UK will reinforce the group’s position as the largest UK manufacturer of luxury leather goods.”

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