Movado Group Inc. on Thursday posted substantial gains in first-quarter net income, as well as a 15.4 percent rise in net sales.

For the three months ended April 30, net income attributable to Movado was $6.6 million, or 26 cents a diluted share, from $491,000, or 2 cents, last year. Net sales rose to $103.7 million from $89.9 million.

The company said gross profit in the quarter was 56.9 percent of sales, or $59 million, versus 54.1 percent of sales, or $48.6 million, in the year-ago period.

Efraim Grinberg, chairman and chief executive officer, told Wall Street analysts in a conference call that the first-quarter revenue gain marked “nine consecutive quarters of revenue growth” for the company, and that sales in the quarter were driven by strength in its Movado brand as well as its licensed brands.

He added, “While our strategic focus on women’s watches for Ebel has been gaining traction, we remain on track to launch two new collections in time for the holidays this year.”

Richard Coté, chief operating officer and executive vice president, said to analysts: “From a global perspective, the watch category continues to perform reasonably well and we continue to experience strong watch sell-through performance at our retail partners.”

Coté noted that the company anticipates “moderate growth in North America, modest growth in Northern Europe, economic uncertainty continuing in Southern Europe, and reasonable continued growth in Asia and South America.”

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