Ciel Textiles, the Mauritius-listed clothing business which supplies a number of European retailers, saw earnings increase in its first-half, driven by a strong performance from its woven division.

In the six months to the end of December, profits grew 23.9% to MUR410m (US$12.2m) from MUR331m a year earlier.

In the second quarter, earnings were up 34.3% to MUR176m from MUR131m in the prior year.

A strong financial performance from the group's woven division, driven by its Asian operations, boosted profitability during the first half.

Adverse currency movements, however, with the euro and South African rand, will be a source of concern in the short to medium term, the company said. Margin erosion is expected to be mitigated through better cost management and sustained profitability from Ciel's Asian operations.

Jérôme de Chasteauneuf, Ciel’s head of finance, said: “Ciel posted a strong first semester and is on track with its transformation plan. Almost all its investment sectors delivered improved contribution. Textile, finance, hotels & resorts sectors are on an upward trend and showed resilience in very challenging market conditions. While these are likely to continue to prevail for the foreseeable future, we are encouraged to further strengthen our organisation and move on with our development strategy.”