Luxury brand Burberry boosts profit as turnaround grows momentum

Christopher Bailey’s last collection for British luxury brand Burberry helped lift the company’s profits by 5 per cent, exceeding analysts’ expectations and signalling a turnaround program is already bearing fruits.

Bailey has stepped down as chief creative officer – and earlier as CEO – and his swansong for the brand, a rainbow-tinted collection released in February, received rapturous reviews from the fashion press.  

Incoming CEO Marco Gobbetti paid tribute to Bailey, praising his final collection and saying the designer had left the company with an “incredible legacy”.  

The new head of design, Riccardo Tisci, will reveal his inaugural offer in autumn.

Stronger domestic sales underpinned a 2 per cent rise in Burberry’s global revenue to £2.66 billion (US$3.6 billion).

Gobbetti said the results showed his strategy to revitalise Burberry was paying off.

“In November, we set out our multi-year plan to re-energise our product, our communication and the experiences customers have of our brand to deliver sustainable long-term value.  We have made good initial progress, our plans are on track and we are seeing positive early signs from our retail and wholesale customers.”

In the new 2019 financial year, Gobbetti is on track to achieve a cumulative £100 million in cost savings.

“In a year of transition, we are pleased with our performance as we began to execute our strategy.

While the task of transforming Burberry is still before us, the first steps we implemented to re-energise our brand are showing promising early signs.  With Riccardo Tisci now on board and a strong leadership team in place, we are excited about the year ahead and remain fully focused on our strategy to deliver long-term sustainable value.”

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