• Q1 earnings fall to SEK6.5m (US$708.8m)
  • Gross margin narrows to 50%
  • Sales grow 21% to SEK158.1m

Swedish underwear brand Björn Borg has booked a mixed first-quarter as sales grew but earnings tumbled. 

In the three months to the end of March, earnings dropped to SEK6.5m (US$708.8m) from SEK53.6m a year earlier. Gross margin also narrowed to 50%, from 53.6% in the year ago period. 

Sales, however, grew 21% to reach SEK158.1m from SEK131.1m in 2014. Revenues were unaffected by exchange rates, the company said. 

"The performance of our own stores remains good and sales for comparable units increased by over 15% compared with Q1 2015," said CEO Henrik Bunge. "Our own e-commerce continues to post strong growth, +103%. In total, Björn Borg's sales rose during the first quarter 2016 by 21% versus the comparable quarter of 2015."

Björn Borg last week announced it had acquired its UK subsidiary in another move to cut the distance between its headquarters and its end consumer. The deal means the division is now wholly-owned by the group, and takes the company one step closer to becoming more vertically integrated.

Björn Borg acquires UK unit in strategic move