Moet Hennessy Louis Vuitton (LVMH), the world's biggest luxury goods maker, delivered better-than-expected sales growth in Q4 as it gained from a steady recovery in Asian demand, especially China. The French company, whose 70 brands range from Dom Perignon champagne to fashion houses such as Fendi and Givenchy, reported sales rose 11 per cent between October and December on a like-for-like basis, which strips out currency swings.
Demand from Asian shoppers has enhanced makers of high-end handbags, clothing and watches the past year, largely due to Chinese demand. LVMH said it was well-equipped to grow further in 2018 "despite unfavourable currencies and geopolitical uncertainties." The company which does not break out earnings for its labels, said group operating income for the entire 2017 stood at 10.36 billion, up 18 per cent from a year earlier and in line with forecasts.
The growth trajectory was partly due to the full integration of the Christian Dior fashion label. LVMH swooped last year on the couture part of the brand it did not already own, uniting it with the perfume and beauty parts of the Dior business. Bernard Arnault, Chairman and CEO says LVMH achieved another record year. The excellent performance, to which all our businesses contributed, is due in part to the buoyant environment but above all to the remarkable creative strength of our brands and their ability to constantly reinvent themselves. In an environment that remains uncertain, we can count on the appeal of our brands and the agility of our teams to strengthen, once again in 2018, our leadership in the universe of high quality products.