May 14, 2021
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Burberry not hurt by Xinjiang cotton row says CEO

May 14, 2021

Burberry’s all-important sales in China don’t seem to have been hurt too much by the row over its stance on Xinjiang cotton, it emerged following the release of its full-year results this week.


The company said its sales were still strong, even though it had seen a backlash in the country. That backlash came on the back of companies in Western countries criticising China after allegations of forced labour in Xinjiang.

Burberry chief Marco Gobbetti conceded that it was a difficult situation and was quoted telling analysts that the business “had to and will continue to navigate through” the issues in China. But he added that “our performance is strong and the numbers have been very good. I will restate that we have seen a limited impact in China for the time being”.

That was despite heavy criticism of the firm’s stance from many Chinese consumers on social media. It also saw award-winning actress Zhou Dongyu terminating her contract with the company, as did actor and model Song Weilong. 

Gobbetti was quoted by The Telegraph saying: “China is a primary focus for us, so we remain extremely, extremely confident and we will continue to invest in the market.” And the firm’s financial head Julie Brown added that it still has “very good relations” with Chinese online marketplace Tencent.

They didn’t comment further on the issue and the firm said nothing about it in its full-year results report.

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