Coronavirus Impact on Fashion

LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton said its first-quarter revenues will fall between 10 and 20 percent as the coronavirus pandemic saps global demand for luxury goods.

The French luxury giant is to disclose its quarterly results on April 16 after the Paris Bourse shuts, and noted “the figure is not known today.”

In a brief statement late Friday to update its Consolidated Financial Statements for the 2019 fiscal year, available since Feb. 3, LVMH provided a paragraph addressing “recent developments and prospects.”

“In a particularly uncertain environment, the group will maintain a strategy focused on the preservation of the value of its brands, supported by the exceptional quality of its products and reactivity of its teams. In the short term, the measures taken by public authorities to combat the COVID-19 pandemic have resulted in the closure of production sites and stores in several countries which will have an impact on the group’s results. This impact cannot be accurately calculated at this time without knowing the timing of a return to normal in these countries.”

Europe’s big luxury players have been revising sales guidance downward in recent weeks as the impact of the health crisis widens and deepens, prompting widespread store closures and lockdowns in many countries, from France to India, even as China is showing signs of a rebound.

Last week Kering said it expects consolidated revenue for the first quarter will likely be down between 13 and 14 percent, or 15 percent in comparable terms,
Parent of Gucci, Saint Laurent and Bottega Veneta, Kering said it expects a sharp impact from the coronavirus on second-quarter sales, as well as a decline in first-half recurring operating margin.
Earlier this month, Burberry said its trading has fallen between 40 and 50 percent in the last six weeks due to the impact of COVID-19.
Burberry noted it is expecting comparable retail store sales in the final weeks of its fiscal year ending March 28 to be within the range of minus-70 percent to minus-80 percent. This follows the significant escalation of governmental regulations; trading, travel and social restrictions in recent days, “and the inevitable impact this will have on demand,” the company said.