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LVMH sales up 15 per cent despite global tensions

Luxury brand owner LVMH has reported a solid 15 per cent increase in sales in the first half of this year, shrugging off gloomy consumer sentiment in many markets.

The parent of Louis Vuitton, Christian Dior, Bulgari, Sephora, DFS, Moet and a raft of other brands recorded sales of €25.1 billion. Organic growth was 12 per cent ahead of the same period a year earlier.

Second quarter growth was also up by 15 per cent of the beginning of the year, with the US, Asia and Europe all showing good growth and an obvious rebound in France in the second quarter.

While the company noted a slowdown in demand in Hong Kong and Macau over the past few months, its DFS department-store subsidiary recorded “good” performance during the first half of the year.

Profit from recurring operations was €5.295 billion for the first half, up by 14 per cent, with operating margin reaching 21.1 per cent – about the same as last year. 

“These results once again illustrate the effectiveness of our strategy and the exceptional desirability of our Maisons, whose products transcend time,” said chairman and CEO Bernard Arnault. 

“Their constant demand for quality and their consistently refreshed creativity are key to LVMH’s success, always guided by a long-term vision, combining exemplarity and responsibility in all the company’s actions. Despite buoyant demand, we will continue to manage costs and remain vigilant into the second half of the year. We are therefore entering the second half of the year with confidence and count on the talent of our teams and their shared entrepreneurial passion to further increase, once again in 2019, our leadership in the world of high-quality products.”

The company’s fashion and leather goods business group recorded organic sales growth of 18 per cent and profit from recurring operations was up 17 per cent. The Louis Vuitton brand business achieved growth in all businesses and regions. Christian Dior had “a remarkable performance during the first half,” the company said, with its new 30 Montaigne line a standout. 

The selective retailing business group achieved organic revenue growth of 8 per cent, with profit from recurring operations up 17 per cent. Within that group, Sephora recorded strong revenue growth and gained market share in all of its locations, LVMH reported. 

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