PARIS — Spanish retail giant Inditex said net profit rose 9.7 percent in 2016 as it continued to expand worldwide, posting same-store sales growth in all geographies and across all brands.
The owner of Zara and Massimo Dutti posted a net profit of 3.16 billion euros, or $3.49 billion, last year, while earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) rose 8 percent to 5.08 billion euros, or $5.62 billion. All dollar rates are calculated at average exchange rates for the period concerned.
“These are a positive set of results against a backdrop of strong prior-year performance,” Pablo Isla, chairman and chief executive officer of Inditex, said in a statement. “This is a direct result of the commitment, spirit and ambition of all the professionals comprising the group, their dedication to the company, passion for fashion and focus on sustainability.”
The world’s largest fashion retailer registered net sales of 23.31 billion euros, or $27.79 billion, in 2016, up 11.5 percent versus the previous year. Sales in constant currency terms rose 13 percent between Feb. 1 and March 12, it reported.
Inditex said it plans to pay a dividend of 0.68 euros, or $0.72, per share, up 13.3 percent year-on-year.
The Arteixo, Spain-based group plans to increase investments to 1.5 billion euros, or $1.59 billion, in 2017 from 1.4 billion euros, or $1.55 billion, in 2016, with a large portion directed to sustainable growth initiatives, including expanding its eco-efficient store base and strengthening its second-hand clothing collection and fiber recycling programs and research.
The fast-fashion giant plans to open stores at the same rate as last year, noting that 70 percent of the openings planned for 2017 were already under contract. Among its flagship openings in the next few months are new Zara stores in Nagoya, Japan; Doha, Qatar; and Mumbai, India.
Inditex opened 279 stores in 56 markets last year, including five new markets: New Zealand, Vietnam, Paraguay, Aruba and Nicaragua. It launched or expanded its online platform in a total of 20 markets, of which 12 were new.
The group now offers e-commerce in 43 markets, following the launch of Zara’s online store in Singapore and Malaysia earlier this month.