Clothing group Benetton said today (14 September) that net revenues for the first half of 2006 jumped by 6.7% to reach EUR898m (US$1.41bn), with development proceeding in its major international markets.

The company said that revenues in the apparel sector were influenced by higher contribution of its Turkish partnership, which was established in May 2005, and by the sales growth of directly operated stores.

Gross operating income at the group was 42.3% of revenues compared with 43.8% in the same period of 2005, while EBIT was EUR89m compared with EUR95m in the first half of 2005

The Mediterranean area, Eastern European Countries, China and India continue to grow significantly, the company said.
Benetton Group chairman Luciano Benetton said: "The development of the group present in all the major markets and the strong acceleration in the orders we are registering confirm the strength of our world-wide commercial network and the appreciation of the quality of our products by the final consumer.

"I have the firm conviction that this tendency is only the beginning and I expect to see further growth in the future."