PPR, parent company of GUCCI doubles profit in H1

Retail-to-luxury group PPR SA announced  this week that net profit in the first half of the year more than doubled as consumer spending recovered and the company increased its business outside of Europe.

The owner of the Yves Saint Laurent and Gucci brands said net profit in the six months through June rose to euro 403 million  from euro189 million in the same period a year ago. Revenue increased 3.6 percent in the period to euro 8.14 billion.

"Our prospects for the short and medium term are good," CEO Francois-Henri Pinault said in a statement. The company did not provide financial guidance for the full year, but said "the strengths that underpinned the quality of PPR’s results in the first six months of the year should once again be at work in the second half."

PPR is focusing on its more profitable luxury and lifestyle businesses. Future plans may include spinning off its Redcats catalog unit, its Conforama furniture chain or even its FNAC books and electronic chain.It already has sold its African car distributor and pharmacy group as part of the strategy.

Revenue at PPR’s Gucci Group subsidiary, which comprises luxury fashion and leather brands such as Yves Saint Laurent and Bottega Veneta as well as its namesake Gucci brand, rose 11.1 percent in the quarter to euro1.82 billion. Sportswear maker Puma AG reported a 0.1 percent increase in sales to euro1.29 billion in the six-month period.