By  on September 25, 2007

MILAN — Prada SpA saw double-digit profit and sales growth in the first half despite the strength of the euro against the dollar and yen.

Prada said the company's earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization for the six months ended July 31 rose 40 percent to 140 million euros, or $187.6 million at average exchange rates for the period. Sales in the half grew 18 percent to 811.5 million euros, or $1.09 billion, but would have advanced 23 percent at constant currency rates.

"This performance confirms the validity of the strategic choices we have made in recent years," Prada chief executive officer Patrizio Bertelli said in a statement. "The growth of Prada's business in all its key markets testifies to the outstanding strength and vitality of the brand, while Miu Miu confirms its significant potential for development."

A Prada spokesman reiterated the company still hasn't decided whether to proceed with a long-anticipated initial public offering.

Prada said it expects full-year EBITDA to rise 18.6 percent to 280 million euros, or $394.8 million at average rates. Prada's fiscal year ends Jan. 31.

Prada SpA's accounts include sales for the Prada, Miu Miu, Car Shoe and Church's labels, but the company did not break out figures for each brand. The revenue also includes sales from Azzedine Alaïa, which Prada sold back to its founder designer in July.

The group said its namesake brand enjoyed "excellent growth" in the first half, citing strong retail sales momentum in Asia, the United States and Europe. Overall, revenues of Prada products rose 15.5 percent to 635.8 million euros, or $851.9 million.

Prada's upgrade of Miu Miu, through revamped store interiors and higher retail prices, appears to be working. Sales at Miu Miu rose 39.4 percent to 100.3 million euros, or $134.4 million. Prada said Miu Miu was particularly well received in Asia, where retail sales more than doubled, and in Europe.

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