Burberry’s Huge Sales Growth Makes Retail Exciting Again

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Burberry creative director Christopher Bailey with looks from his fall 2010 collection. Photo: Imaxtree

Isn't it lovely when people make money by selling clothes? Burberry's sales rose 27 percent in the first quarter from a year earlier, beating analysts' expectations by a leap. Revenue in the period totaled £291 million ($436 million) up from £229 million ($345 million) in the same period last year. From Bloomberg Businessweek:

“It’s a massive beat versus expectations,” said Erwan Rambourg, an analyst at HSBC in London, who had estimated sales of 260 million pounds. “You can be excited by retail.”


The growth over the three months ending June 30 is thanks to Asian markets, of course, and, perhaps more surprisingly, wholesale sales. And just this week, the Times was going on about how unexciting retail was — so unexciting, in fact, that it was forcing high-fashion companies to take drastic measures like sell their wares on their own websites. (It should be noted that Burberry has been on the Internet train for a while, riding the cars of innovation that result in ideas like streaming footage of bands playing songs while wearing Burberry. E-commerce is old news to them.)

Sure, these numbers aren't necessary to know Burberry is a tremendously coveted brand, but they refreshingly show the increased demand for luxury goods. While the label enjoys increasing retail floor space, Burberry CEO Angela Ahrendts said the company plans to open 20 to 30 stores in the Americas and Asia this year. Maybe happy-go-lucky markdowns are finally on the way out.

Burberry Sales Rise 27% on Asia, Beating Estimates [Bloomberg Businessweek]