Hugo Boss sales improve on brand divergence

Hugo BossHugo Boss has achieved solid sales growth thanks to its policy of focusing on its own retail store network.

Retail same-store Hugo Boss sales rose 5 per cent in the third quarter, to September 30, and currency-adjusted sales were up 3 per cent.

“We are well on track to achieving our goals for 2017 or even exceeding some of them,” said Mark Langer, Hugo Boss CEO. “In particular, the performance of our own retail business is highly satisfying. We are making good progress in repositioning Boss and Hugo.”

In its own retail business, the momentum of comp-store sales growth accelerated.

“This performance was again underpinned by Great Britain, China and, for the first time in two years, by the own-retail business in the US,” said Langer.

“The group’s own online business also grew in the quarter. On the other hand, sales in the wholesale channel declined slightly as expected. Operating profit fell slightly short of the prior year’s figure due to intensive marketing activities for the Boss and Hugo brands, spending on the digital transformation of the business model as well as negative currency effects.”

The group now expects Asia-Pacific and Europe to drive “low single-digit percentage rate” sales growth for the remainder of this year.

“Asia/Pacific will particularly contribute to this growth,” said Langer.

“Hugo Boss now assumes that sales in its own retail business will increase by a mid single-digit rate, while the unchanged forecast for wholesale sales is a decline in the low to mid single-digit percentage rates. License business is expected to grow at a double-digit rate. In addition, the Group specifies its earnings forecast for the full year and now expects EBITDA before special items to remain broadly stable.”

From the end of the year, first parts of the Spring/Summer 2018 collection, which reflects the focus on splitting Boss and Hugo for the first time, will be available in stores.

“The repositioning of the two brands has been accompanied by numerous online and offline events and campaigns over the past few months. Formula 1 world champion Lewis Hamilton and Hollywood actor James Marsden presented their personal favorites from the Boss Menswear collection in the global “Own Your Journey” social media campaign. Consumer response to the advertised styles has been extremely positive.”

In July, Boss Womenswear unveiled its “Gallery Collection” in a presentation at the Berlin Fashion Week. Future capsule collections of both brands will be used to generate heightened attention.

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