Luxury fashion brand Burberry Group Plc on Monday posted a 15 per cent year-on-year climb in first half revenues and said it expects its Spring/Summer 2002/03 order book to show single-digit growth.

The company, which was floated in July, said for the first half ended September 30, retail sales were up 17 per cent on an underlying basis, driven by existing and new store performance.

Wholesale sales increased eight per cent, or four per cent on an underlying basis reflecting earlier shipments of autumn product, while licensing revenue jumped 14 per cent driven by strong volume growth in Japan.

Total retail sales jumped 32 per cent, boosted by the contribution from stores and concessions added as part of the Asia acquisitions. It also experienced continued strength in the US market.

Burberry opened five stores in the first half, including a flagship store in Barcelona, three Burberry stores in London, Hong Kong and Florida as well as one outlet store. It will open its first store in Italy in late 2003.

Chief executive, Rose Marie Bravo, said: "Burberry's performance in the first half was on track, driven by growth in key product categories, targeted geographies and distribution channels.

"These results were particularly notable given the trading conditions. Moving into the second half, we remain confident in our strategies while mindful of the difficult and uncertain environment."