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Aeffe Earnings, Sales Gain in First Half

Italian fashion group Aeffe SpA on Thursday posted growth in full-year sales and profits after reporting a 2 percent gain in first-half revenues and earnings.

MILAN — Italian fashion group Aeffe SpA on Thursday reported a 2 percent gain in first-half revenues and earnings, and confirmed growth in full-year sales and profits.

The company, which operates the Alberta Ferretti, Moschino and Pollini brands and produces collections for Jean Paul Gaultier, posted net profits of 6 million euros, or $9.2 million at average exchange.

Total revenues for the first six months of the year reached 147 million euros, or $225 million, which gained 5.9 percent at constant exchange, excluding the effects of the sale of a stake in the Narciso Rodriguez brand to Liz Claiborne Inc. in May 2007.

Earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization fell 8.7 percent to 20.9 million euros, or $32 million — although net of unspecified nonrecurring items, these remained flat.

“Based on these results and on the current orders backlog for the fall-winter 2008, I can confirm that 2008 will show a growth in sales and profits,” Aeffe executive chairman Massimo Ferretti said.

Alberta Ferretti, Moschino and Pollini each reported revenue gains of between 4 and 5 percent, together accounting for nearly 90 percent of group turnover in the period.

Sales at Jean Paul Gaultier and other brands fared less well, slipping 11.5 percent and 14 percent, respectively.
Geographically speaking, revenues gained the most in Russia, up more than a fifth to 13.6 million euros, or $21 million, while Italy — Aeffe’s biggest market — reported a 4 percent increase to 57.2 million euros, or $87.5 million. Sales were flat in the rest of Europe and decreased 21.2 percent in the U.S. and 10.9 percent in Japan.

“We are particularly satisfied with our core brands’ performance, especially [the] Moschino and Alberta Ferretti brands, and with the growth in the emerging countries,” Ferretti said.

Aeffe stock, which has been under pressure since listing on the Milan Stock Exchange STAR segment for small companies in July last year, closed down 1.9 percent Thursday to 1.42 euros, or $2.21 at current exchange.