Gucci sales fall 8 percent in the first quarter 2015
In the three months to March 31, sales at Gucci fell 7.9% on a like-for-like basis to €869 million, amid fallout from the overhaul at the brand. Kering, Gucci’s parent company sacked its CEO and designer in December to try to stem the brand’s declining sales. It named Marco Bizzarri as new CEO, after he oversaw the stellar growth of Bottega Veneta, and promoted in-house designer Alessandro Michele as creative director.
Since then, the label has moved to radically reduce the wholesale side of its business as it seeks to upgrade the brand’s image aiming for the vast majority of its sales to be made within Gucci’s own store network. Gucci’s quarterly wholesale revenue fell 23 percent, two thirds of which was due to account closures mainly in Europe, said Chief Financial Officer Jean-Marc Duplaix.
Sales at Gucci’s own retail network of 502 stores fell 4 percent in the quarter, including a 10 percent slide in the Asia-Pacific region. However, the brand’s retail revenue remained stable in North America and rose 6 percent in Western Europe.
Asked about moves by rival brands such as Chanel to cut prices in Asia to reduce discrepancies with Europe, Duplaix said the group did not want to react immediately.
“There is no price harmonization policy,” Duplaix said. He added that for certain brands and products there could be some harmonization across regions, excluding value added tax or customs duties.