By  on January 27, 2011

MILAN — Steady growth, aided by a leap in the fourth quarter, and gains across all geographic markets helped two leading Italian luxury brands post higher revenues in 2010.

Propeled by an expansion of its footwear category, Tod’s SpA hit the $1 billion mark, posting preliminary sales of 787.5 million euros, or $1.03 billion, in 2010, up 10.4 percent compared with the previous year. In particular, revenues grew 16.1 percent in the fourth quarter.

A strong rebound in the watch category and continuous growth of its jewelry and accessories divisions boosted Bulgari Group’s revenues last year, which grew 15.4 percent to 1.06 billion euros, or $1.4 billion, compared with 926.6 million euros, or $1.28 billion, the previous year. In particular, Bulgari posted a 20.5 percent increase in the fourth quarter.

“These sales results are highly satisfactory overall, and represent a record fourth-quarter turnover in the history of the company, thus confirming the recovery we had already noted in the previous quarters,” said Francesco Trapani, chief executive officer of Bulgari.

Likewise, Diego Della Valle, chairman and ceo of Tod’s, said sales in 2010 “have experienced a continuous acceleration of their growth throughout the year, with an excellent Christmas season.” Della Valle said he was “confident that full-year profitability will also be strong. Furthermore, on the back of the positive results of the spring-summer 2011 collection orders, I also believe that the current year will deliver outstanding results.”

The Tod’s brand registered sales of 407 million euros, or $537.2 million, last year, up 16.7 percent from 2009. During the fourth quarter, it grew 27.3 percent. Hogan sales gained 4.4 percent to 268.3 million euros, or $354.1 million. Apparel brand Fay saw a 2.2 percent decline in sales to 89.7 million euros, or $118.4 million, while the Roger Vivier brand grew 45.3 percent to 21.7 million euros, or $28.6 million.

Footwear was once again the leading category for the group, showing an 11.6 percent increase in 2010 and reaching sales of 564.6 million euros, or $745.2 million. Leather goods and accessories rose 10.6 percent in the full year and 35 percent in the fourth quarter. Apparel grew 4.3 percent in 2010.

Sales in Italy gained 5.1 percent to 425.7 million euros, or $561.9 million, and 8.6 percent in the rest of Europe, reaching 163.7 million euros, or $216 million.

Revenues in the U.S. rose 15 percent to 53.4 million euros, or $70.5 million. In particular, that market showed a 23 percent spike in the fourth quarter. Asia and the rest of the world grew 30.5 percent to 144.7 million euros, or $191 million in 2010, registering a 65 percent jump in the last quarter. Tod’s cited China, Hong Kong, Taiwan and Korea as the best-performing areas.

Dollar figures were converted from the euro at average exchange for the periods to which they refer.

Bulgari certified a “definitive recovery” in all product categories and geographic areas, underscoring the company’s performance in Japan and Greater China.

In 2010, jewelry, the group’s core business, rose 21.4 percent to 488.4 million euros, or $644.7 million. Watches gained 1.3 percent, reaching sales of 214.9 million, or $283.6 million, but the category showed 7 percent growth in the fourth quarter, after three weak periods. Accessories grew 34.7 percent during the year, while perfumes, Bulgari’s second core category, rose 12 percent.

Sales in Europe rose 5.9 percent, accounting for 34.8 percent of revenues. Asia saw a 24.1 percent rise, accounting for 45.5 percent of total sales — the biggest market for Bulgari. The U.S. grew 23.5 percent, making up 13 percent of total revenues. In particular, Japan progressively improved each quarter, gaining 24.9 in the fourth quarter. Greater China and the rest of Asia grew 47.3 percent and 48 percent, respectively, in the fourth quarter.

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