For the quarter ended Dec. 31, 2013, Richemont posted a 9% increase at constant exchange rates (a 3% increase at actual rates). Total sales rose 2.8% to 2.941 billion euros (about $4 billion). Analysts’ average estimate expected 3.01 billion. A year ago, third quarter sales increase was 9.3%).
In its retail division, sales rose 14% to 1.66 billion euros, while wholesale sales were up 3% to 1.28 billion as retailers, especially in Asia-Pacific, were cautious.
By region, Europe and the Middle East posted a 9% gain in sales; the Americas were up 12% and Japan was up 13%. Asia Pacific’s sales rose 6%, apparently dragged down by lower sales in mainland China where austerity measures were put into place.
For the nine-months ended December, sales grew 9% at constant exchange rates or 4% at actual rates.
The company said the stronger euros against the dollar and yen had a negative impact on its reported sales.
Commenting on the report, Jon Cox, an analyst at Kepler Cheuvreux, said, “What was interesting was that wholesale was pretty weak while retail was pretty strong, so it is only a matter of time before the independents start reordering again.”
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