Ralph Lauren optimistic about European business
Ralph Lauren finished up its fiscal year on March 29. Net sales increased from 4.92 to 5.30 billion euros. The company saw a resurgence, in particular, in Europe. "We have seen steady growth in our European retail business, with double-digit growth compared to the previous year,” said CFO Christopher Peterson. “But we saw our wholesales actually start to accelerate slightly in the third quarter, reaching double-digit growth in the fourth. "
For the current year, Ralph Lauren expects to maintain its growth. However, the dynamic on the continent is not the same everywhere. "I think Britain is the strongest part of our European business,” said Christopher Peterson. “Southern Europe appears to be stabilizing. It’s not declining, but it’s also not necessarily progressing a great deal. I think we see potential in Scandinavia and Germany and stability in France."
More unexpectedly, it seems that Ralph Lauren’s marketing investment in China has borne fruit on the European market. "As we have invested in repositioning our brand image in the Greater China region (China, Hong Kong, Taiwan and Macau), especially with our Princes flagship (in central Hong Kong, ed) and a number luxury shops, we are beginning to see results coming from small numbers of Chinese business tourists in Europe, show very, very strong double-digit growth,” says the CFO. “And as we are opening a flagship store in Lee Gardens (also in Hong Kong, ed) and are increasing our marketing and advertising budget in the Greater China area, where we aren’t that well known, we believe that this will translate into results in both our European and American operations."
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