IBERIAN IMPROVEMENT: Inditex, the Spanish retailer that owns Zara and five other branded apparel chains, on Thursday reported that net income during the first nine months of 2002 increased 31 percent to $276.8 million as net sales rose 25.8 percent to $2.77 billion. For the third quarter, sales advanced 27.7 percent to $1.2 billion. Dollar figures have been converted from the euro at current exchange rates. The firm attributed the increase to "both like-for-like sales growth and the greater number of existing stores." Inditex inaugurated 199 stores through the third quarter and expects to open another 66 to 86 units by the end of its fiscal year. As reported, Inditex’s first-half sales increased 25 percent to $1.67 billion. Meanwhile, in a separate statement, Inditex announced it would donate $6.1 million to victims of the ecological catastrophe caused when the oil tanker Prestige sank and spilled its cargo last month off of Spain’s northwestern coast. Fishing is one of the main sources of livelihood for people living along the Galician coast. Madrid has already banned fishing in the area.

NEW MANAGER AT ADVANSTAR: Marilyn Harrington has been named general manager of Advanstar Communications Inc.’s East Coast Fashion Group, which includes the trade shows Femme, International Fashion Fabric Exhibition and I-TexStyle in New York. Harrington succeeds Deborah Baum, who left the company Nov. 8. Harrington, who most recently was general manager at Primedia Business Exhibitions, brings more than 13 years in trade show management experience to her new position. She reports to Joe Loggia, president and chief operating officer of Advanstar and president of MAGIC International.

NEW HIRE AT DONEGER: Retail buying and consulting firm The Doneger Group has hired Sherri Mitzmacher as a market specialist in charge of moderate career and coordinate sportswear. Mitzmacher was most recently a buyer for women’s large-size denim and casual woven sportswear at Added Dimensions, a division of Charming Shoppes Inc. She will report to Kathy Bradley-Riley, merchandise manager for sportswear at Doneger.

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