Business

Gucci sales surge following major revamp

Gucci model Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Creative director Alessandro Michele has made Gucci's clothes quirkier

Surging demand for Gucci clothes and handbags boosted sales at parent company Kering in the first three months of the year.

It follows a major revamp at Gucci - Kering's biggest brand - under creative director Alessandro Michele.

Kering, which owns other marques like Yves Saint Laurent (YSL), also benefited from a recovery in spending by wealthy Chinese shoppers.

Sales at the French group jumped 27% to €3.1bn (£2.7bn) in the quarter.

Gucci's revenue rocketed 37%, while YSL was up 12%.

Alessandro Michele replaced Frida Giannini as creative director at Gucci in 2015, after several years of falling sales at the Italian label.

He introduced more quirky, gender-neutral designs aimed at younger consumers and revamped Gucci's stores. The 97-year-old label has since returned to growth.

The Kering division that includes Balenciaga and Alexander McQueen also saw double-digit expansion in the quarter.

However, analysts warned the European luxury sector was still grappling with headwinds, including a strong euro - which impacts profits made abroad when they are converted back into the currency.

They also fear brewing US-China trade tensions could risk dampening the resurgent Chinese demand.

François-Henri Pinault, Kering's chairman and chief executive, said: "We face... a tough currency environment, but we are confident in the ability of our houses to continue doing better than their peers."

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