By  on April 20, 2006

PARIS – Luxury lost none of its luster at LVMH Moet Hennessy Louis Vuitton, which saw its first-quarter sales vault 15 percent thanks to robust demand for champagne, status handbags and anti-wrinkle creams.

Touting particular strength in Asia and the United States, the French luxury giant said sales for the three months ended March 31 reached 3.56 billion euros, or $4.38 billion. In organic terms, the increase stood at 12 percent, reflecting a more favorable currency environment.

LVMH said all business groups contributed to the gains, led by the most profitable ones: wines and spirits up 23 percent to 632 million euros, or $778.8 million; watches and jewelry improving 23 percent to 150 million euros, or $184.8 million, and fashion and leather goods advancing 14 percent to 1.29 billion euros, or $1.59 billion. (Dollar figures are calculated at average exchange rates for the period.)

Sales of perfumes and cosmetics vaulted 18 percent to 597 million euros, or $735.7 million, with LVMH citing the “extraordinary” success of Dior’s Capture Totale skin care and makeup.

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