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Riccardo Tisci makes magic at Burberry

Burberry is hailing the success of new creative director Riccardo Tisci as its June-quarter same-store sales grew by 4 per cent. 

Sales growth in China was up by the mid-teens, with Asia Pacific overall nudging 10 per cent.

“This was a good quarter in our multi-year journey to transform Burberry,” said CEO Marco Gobbetti. “We increased the availability of products designed by Riccardo, while continuing to shift consumer perceptions of our brand and align our network to our new creative vision. The consumer response was very promising, delivering strong growth in our new collections.”

The company described the response to Tisci’s designs as “excellent”, his collections delivering strong double-digit percentage growth compared to prior-year equivalent collections, and in line with Burberry’s expectations.

The proportion of new product increased to around 50 per cent of the brand’s offer in mainline stores by the end of June. 

‘‘Burberry’s transformation plan under new CEO Marco Gobbetti is starting to pay off,” observed Chloe Collins, senior retail analyst at GlobalData.  

She said much credit is due to Tisci, whose collections “offer a fresh and edgy revamp of the brand’s classic and neutral designs”. 

Burberry’s adept use of social media was also a factor in the recovery, with celebrity influencers such as Rihanna and Irina Shayk continuing to expand the brand’s reach and drive engagement with consumers. 

“Burberry must continue to invest in its social platforms to fight off other luxury players such as Gucci and Louis Vuitton, which are focusing on the channel to target younger shoppers. Burberry should more heavily promote its Instagram checkout feature to drive sales, as well as increasing brand engagement via marketing events.”

Meanwhile, Burberry’s review of its retail network has seen 23 stores reconfigured to the new creative vision and led to a 2 per cent reduction in selling space, through the closure of non-strategic sites. Of 38 smaller stores selected for closure, nine have now been shuttered and in the wholesale space, Burberry is continuing to rationalise space in non-luxury US resellers. 

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