• Q2 loss widened to $14.4m
  • Operating income rose to $69m
  • Revenues increased 8% to $977m 
Levi Strauss has benefited from global growth of its Levis brand

Levi Strauss has benefited from global growth of its Levi's brand

Jeans giant Levi Strauss & Co has widened its second quarter loss after higher sales were offset by financing costs and write-downs of deferred tax assets.

The San Francisco based firm said its net loss widened to $14.4m from $4.1m a year ago, but noted that it had benefited from global growth of its Levi brand, business acquisitions, retail expansion, improved margins and currency exchange rates.

Revenues in the three months to 30 May increased 8% to $977m.

Sales rose 8% in the Americas, thanks to the contribution of the outlet stores acquired in 2009 and strong Levi's brand performance in men's, juniors' and boys' products. But sales of Signature and US Dockers brand continued to fall.

New brand-dedicated retail stores pushed Asia Pacific sales up by 8%, while Europe's sales grew 9%, helped by last year's acquisition of the footwear and accessories business and an expanded retail network.

Operating income improved from $56m to $69m thanks to foreign currency gains, and gross margin climbed to 51% of revenues from 46% a year earlier.

"We had another good quarter, which gives us solid revenue growth and operating income for the first six months of the year," said John Anderson, president and CEO.

He said the company is seeing the benefit of investments in the business over recent years. "The Levi's brand is performing well, and consumers are responding to our more innovative products," he added.