• Pre-tax profit climbed 49% to GBP129m (US$206m)
  • Underlying revenues up 17% to GBP641m
  • Same-store sales rose 9% 

British luxury goods maker Burberry Plc today (16 November) booked a 49% hike in first-half pre-tax profit, helped by strong growth of its apparel and leather bags in Asia.

Pre-tax profit climbed to GBP129m (US$206m) in the six months to 30 September, with underlying revenues – which remove the impact of currency shifts – up 17% to GBP641m. Same-store sales rose 9%.

Revenue highlights included a 26% rise in non-apparel to 40% of sales, led by large leather goods; and a 13% rise in apparel sales driven by its core outerwear lines like the iconic raincoat. Sales in emerging markets surged 46%.

The company added that adjusted retail/wholesale operating margin rose to 14.8% from 10.7% a year earlier.

“The Burberry team delivered a strong first half,” said CEO Angela Ahrendts. “The continued focus on the brand, ongoing investment in our digital, IT and retail infrastructure, especially in China, and a disciplined approach to driving growth underpin our confidence in delivering long-term sustainable returns.”

The company opened 20 stores in the first half and said it plans to open another 10 stores in the last six months of the year, with half of these in China.