H&M India sales almost double to Rs 955 crore in 2017

03 February, 2018, 09:56 | Author: Bert Pena
  • H&M India sales grow 87 per cent to SEK 1179 million

The announcement comes just as H&M announced a 34 percent pretax profit drop in the fiscal fourth quarter through November, declines blamed in part on unexpectedly sluggish sales in December and January.

H&M Hennes & Mauritz AB (ST:HM-B) saw its share price drop more than 10% during trading on Jan 31, amid investor concerns regarding the company's plan to close more stores this year than any year in the past two decades.

The company's shares were down by almost seven percent in mid-session business on the Stockholm stock exchange, taking their decline over the past 12 months to just under 42 percent. "In addition, some imbalances in certain aspects of the H&M brand's assortment and composition also contributed to this weaker result", said Karl-Johan Persson, H&M CEO in a statement. "This development mirrored the shift in the market from offline to online, and also we have to say we haven't improved the shopping experience as rapidly increasing customer expectations require". Sales for the period slid by 4 percent to 58.481 billion SEK ($7.43 million).

Fashion retailer H&M said on Wednesday sales at the start of the new year were slower than expected and it would close more core brand stores that have attracted fewer shoppers, sending its shares to a 9-year low.

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"The H&M group is developing new brands - we now have eight brands that are all scalable - and we will soon launch our ninth brand, Afound", added Persson. H&M offer fashion and quality at the best price in a sustainable way. The first store will open on Drottninggatan in Stockholm in parallel with the launch of the digital marketplace in Sweden.

H&M has lagged behind competitors in the move to online sales and although its digitalization process is in full swing now, growing online sales aren't fully compensating for reduced footfall to its stores.

The retailer will also launch online sales in India this year while taking the franchise route to launch e-commerce operations in markets like Saudi Arabia and United Arab Emirates. The H&M online "visit share", the percentage of web site visits within an entire industry or sector, grew only 22% from March 2014 to March 2017, according to Hitwise.

The company plans to open 220 net stores in 2018 (390 new ones and 170 closings), which is well below last year's 388.

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