Zara parent company Inditex said Wednesday that like-for-like sales during the first half of 2016 rose 11 percent. Positive growth in all markets helped net sales increase by 11 percent (or by 16 percent in local currencies) to reach 10.47 billion euros ($11.7 billion) and pumped up net profits by 8 percent to 1.26 billion euros ($1.4 billion). Inditex opened 83 stores in 38 markets—now has a physical presence in 92 markets—and expanded its e-commerce offering to 11 more countries. So far so good for the second half of 2016: The company revealed that sales in local currencies in stores and online grew 13 percent between Aug. 1-Sept. 18.
Sales at British high-street retailer River Island rose from 931.6 million pounds ($1.2 billion) to 932.7 million pounds ($1.21 billion) in the year ended Dec. 26, but pre-tax profit fell from 148 million pounds ($192 million) to 123 million pounds ($159.68 million), according to accounts seen by The Telegraph. At the same time, e-commerce sales surged 30 percent compared to the prior year and click-and-collect orders jumped 40 percent.
Esprit on Tuesday reported its first increase in comparable store sales in nine years. Comps, including e-commerce, rose 8.1% in local currencies in the year ended June 30, with online sales now representing 23.3% of total revenue. In Germany, Esprit’s largest market, comps outperformed the market throughout the year virtually every month, by an average of 9.5%. From a product perspective, growth was driven by womenswear. But while the retailer swung to a profit of 21 million Hong Kong dollars ($27 million) from a loss of 3.7 billion Hong Kong dollars ($477 million), revenue declined 1.1% to 17.79 billion Hong Kong dollars ($2.29 billion).
Ascena Retail Group said Monday that total net sales increased from $1.2 billion to $1.8 billion in its fourth quarter ended July 25, which the company attributed to the acquisition of Ann Inc. (comprising Ann Taylor, Loft and Lou & Grey) in Q1. However, using unaudited internally generated Ann data from the pre-acquisition period, Q4 comparable store sales were down 6 percent. Excluding Ann, Ascena’s comparable store sales were down 4 percent, with plus-size women’s chain Lane Bryant generating the company’s only increase in sales at stores open at least one year of 1 percent. The price of Ascena shares (ASNA) is down 44.87% year-to-date.