LONDON — The weaker pound proved a boon for Jimmy Choo, which saw its revenue rocket 14.5 percent to 364 million pounds, or $495 million, in the year ended Dec. 31. At constant exchange, revenue edged up 2 percent, fueled by growth in Asia and in men’s footwear, its fastest-growing category.
All figures have been converted at average exchange rates for the 12-month period.
The company said Thursday that year-end profits will be in line with expectations. Choo added that sales trends have been “improving” across all regions, and that the brand is well-positioned to take advantage of a stronger marketplace in 2017. It will publish full fiscal results in March.
Choo is the latest luxury brand to see some signs of recovery in the luxury sector, which has been hit by unpredictable tourist patterns, a slowdown in Europe due to terrorist attacks, an uneven and promotions-driven U.S. market, and currency ups and downs. In 2016, the post-referendum, weaker pound boosted sales in the U.K. with shoppers hungry for bargains.
The weaker British currency has also been inflating the balance sheets of U.K.-based companies that trade internationally and report their financial results in pounds.
In 2016, the main driver of revenue growth was shoes, which represented 75 percent of sales, with the balance from accessories and licensing. The company said men’s shoes and accessories are its fastest-growing category, and now account for around 9 percent of revenue. Jimmy Choo has extended its Safilo license until 2023, and scheduled the launch of men’s sunglasses and eyewear for 2018.
Retail sales climbed 4 percent at constant currency, and represented 67 percent of overall revenue, boosted by new store openings and renovations.
The number of net new directly operated stores opened in the year was nine, bringing the current number of stores to 150. The company said it has refitted a total of 16 stores in the year, with more than 45 percent of the retail portfolio showcasing the new concept by David Collins Studio.
Like-for-like sales were down 1 percent in 2016, reflecting the impact of the store renovations and downward retail price adjustments in some markets. Choo said it saw a “much-improved” sales trends throughout the second half. Online also grew and represented 6 percent of revenue growth in the period.