Hugo Boss Defers Margin Target

Men's wear firm confirms revenue goal for 2015 amid fast growth in its retail network.

BERLIN — At its investor day in Hong Kong, Hugo Boss acknowledged it will not achieve its goal of a 25 percent EBITDA margin goal by 2015, but reconfirmed its target of reaching 3 billion euros in group sales by that year.


“Our own retail business is progressing faster than expected,” said Gerd von Podewils, senior vice president global communications. “It’s a profitable machine. We don’t want to slow down this momentum, so we are accepting an in-between dampening of margin development.”


The German fashion group’s own retail business has been steadily driving growth in recent years, and Boss said it expects to generate “more than 60 percent of its sales in 2015 by selling collections directly to consumers.”


In 2012, the group’s retail business contributed 49 percent of group sales. Boss currently operates 992 own retail stores worldwide. About 50 new store openings in prime retail locations are planned for 2014. The group has been closing non-performing doors, as well as upgrading existing stores.


Boss also told investors it is investing in its collections by supplementing its core premium men’s wear offerings with “a significantly strengthened range in the men’s luxury segment.”


Boss noted its women’s wear offerings would receive a “substantial upgrade” with Jason Wu as artistic director of Boss Woman, “thereby activating existing sales potential in a more targeted manner than in the past.”


Boss is forecasting full-year currency-adjusted sales growth of between 6 and 8 percent, supported by all regions. EBITDA before special items is expected to grow by 6 and 8 percent as well.