MADRID—Inditex, owner of fashion brand Zara, has outpaced Swedish rival H&M in its efforts to bounce back from the coronavirus crisis, with second-quarter sales rising above pre-pandemic levels.
The world’s largest fashion retailer saw sales rise above pre-pandemic levels in the quarter as most stores reopened and people rushed to renew their wardrobes after store closures imposed to stem the spread of the virus. Ran.
Rival H&M’s sales grew less than expected in the three months to August from a year earlier, and remained below pre-pandemic levels. H&M said the lockdown and restrictions hampered its growth, especially in Asia.
Inditex Executive Chairman Pablo Isla said that despite some restrictions in Asia due to the pandemic, in-store and online sales across all brands and markets are improving.
“We have made a strong start to the autumn-winter season,” he explained in a conference call. “Inditex’s competitive differentiation is bigger than ever.”
Analysts said consumers have recently shifted their spending to focus on fashion workwear as big cities slowly return to normalcy and most lockdowns are lifted, a trend that benefitted Inditex brands. starring Zara and Massimo Dutee.
The Spanish company’s second quarter net profit of 850 million euros was higher than 214 million euros ($181.14 million) booked in the same period in 2020 and 4 percent higher than profit in 2019.
Inditex said sales jumped 6.99 billion euros in the May-July period, up 7 percent from the same period in 2019, as shoppers started buying clothes for summer social events again.
Sales during the second quarter were in line with €7.02 billion expected by analysts surveyed by Refinitiv.
Inditex said in-store and online sales at constant exchange rates between August and the first week of September were 22 per cent higher than a year ago and 9 per cent higher than the same period of 2019.
Although fashion retailers are recovering from the pandemic, the spread of the Delta version has meant that some restrictions have been reimposed, while many industries, including fashion, face supply problems due to shipping container shortages and other constraints. Is.
New Paris Store
Shares in H&M, which reports month-end full quarterly figures, traded 3.3 percent lower at 0940 GMT, while Inditex slipped 1.6 percent.
During the pandemic, Inditex strengthened its digital retail platform and closed its smaller outlets across the world in favor of expanding flagship stores capable of acting as mini distribution hubs.
Inditex said 99 percent of all its stores have reopened and are currently operating 6,654 stores worldwide, compared to 7,337 stores a year ago.
Chairman Isla said its largest Zara store would open in Paris by October and that its Uterc brand would be integrated into Massimo Dutee stores by next year, as part of a digital transformation strategy he was accelerating.
Inditex online sales grew 36 per cent in the first half of 2020 compared to the same period in 2020, when restrictions on mobility in key markets including the UK, Germany and France forced buyers to shop from home.
The company expects online sales to exceed 25 percent of total sales this year and will launch a men’s sports collection called Zara Athletics at the end of September.
($1 = 1.1814 euros)
by Corina Ponce and Anna Ringstrom
This News Originally From – The Epoch Times