MILAN — Italian eyewear maker Luxottica Group SpA expects market conditions to ease after a challenging nine months, which included a 20.6 percent drop in third-quarter earnings.
“Now that we are approaching the end of a year as demanding as 2009, we believe that the worst is behind us,” Luxottica chief executive officer Andrea Guerra stated Thursday. “We are optimistic about the future.”
Net profits for the three months through Sept. 30 fell to 83.1 million euros, or $118.8 million, from 104.6 million euros, or $157.6 million, although Luxottica noted third-quarter earnings in 2008 were aided by 29 million euros, or $43.7 million, of nonrecurring items.
Dollar figures were converted at average exchange rates for the periods to which they refer.
Consolidated net sales increased 0.9 percent to 1.22 billion euros, or $1.75 billion, boosted by favorable exchange-rate fluctuations. At constant exchange, sales declined 1.4 percent.
Luxottica, which owns the Oakley and Ray-Ban labels and holds eyewear licenses with brands including Bulgari, Burberry, Chanel, Dolce & Gabbana, Prada, Tiffany & Co. and Versace, said international markets stabilized in the third quarter, though in an environment that continued to be challenging. Europe, and in particular Italy, Spain, Germany and France, showed “encouraging signs of recovery,” while North America found “some stability.” Emerging markets overall “did not show signs of a slowdown,” Luxottica said.
“We are working to make sure that 2010 is again a normal year, in which we enjoy growth in sales, a solid improvement in profitability, greater than the growth in sales, as well as strong free cash-flow generation and deleveraging,” Guerra stated.
Earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization declined 17.3 percent to 214 million euros, or $305.8 million. As of Sept. 30, net debt declined to 2.41 billion euros, or $3.45 billion, from 2.63 billion euros, or $3.96 billion, as of June 30, which Luxottica attributed to tight controls over working capital and favorable exchange rate fluctuations.
Earnings per share fell 20.7 percent to 0.18 euros, or 25 cents.
Luxottica issued the results after the close of trading in Milan, where its stock gained 3.6 percent to 17.15 euros, or $25.36.
“Azzedine has been one of the biggest influences in my life. He has always been such a strong, loving, fatherly figure to me. I call him Papa. His designs are indescribably unique, they are pieces of art. He knew how to make the female form look its loveliest. I have so many memories of him; my favorite might be during my first show with him in Paris. He liked me and he wanted to help me get more work. He called all his friends at Kenzo and Comme des Garcons, and asked them to book me. They said, ‘But she can’t walk!’ And he said, ‘but she has such a great ass!' His friendship and support has been the great privilege of my career. I can't imagine life without him. Repose en paix mon Papa.” - @stephanieseymour tells @wwd. #wwdfashion (📷: @steveeichner) #alaia #azzedinealaia
Azzedine Alaïa, flanked by two of his closest friends, models Stephanie Seymour and Naomi Campbell.
He designed Seymour’s dress for her 1995 wedding to Peter Brant, and treated Campbell (who famously called him Papa), like a daughter. For more on the legendary designer, tap the link in bio. #wwdfashion #alaia #azzedinealaia
Azzedine Alaïa's “I-did-it-my-way” ethos stood out starkly at a time when brands are experimenting with consumer-facing fashion shows, coed formats and trans-seasonal collections – anything to perk up lackluster sales of ready-to-wear in an age of Insta-everything. “It’s not creation anymore. This becomes a purely industrial approach,” the late designer told WWD in an interview last year. “But anyway, the rhythm of collections is so stupid. It’s unsustainable. There are too many collections.” Read more about the iconic designer’s life and work on wwd.com, link in bio. #wwdfashion #azzedinealaia (📷: @WWD Archive, 1986) #alaia
Sneaker reselling app @goat’s latest exhibit, "The Greatest: New York," tells the story of New York's sneaker culture. To celebrate the exhibit, an intimate crowd gathered on Thursday night at the pop-up gallery space, located at Platform in Culver City, to hear guest speaker and illustrator @esymai talk about her own rise in streetwear and women in the business. "For me I'm just someone who is creative. I like to create things," said Chang. #wwdfashion
Azzedine Alaïa, one of the most iconic couturiers of the modern era whose body-con designs defined Eighties fashion, has died in Paris. The diminutive Tunisian-born designer, known for his structured knitted dresses with fitted waists and impeccably cut, figure-hugging second skin silhouettes was deeply admired by his peers, and counted supermodel Naomi Campbell - his adoptive daughter - among his inner circle, one of a gang of glamazons including Farida Khelfa, Carla Bruni and Stephanie Seymour who became ambassadors of his style. (📷: Alexandre Guirkinger) #wwdblast