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Zara's UK arm continues to dominate with trend-defying profits


PHOTO: Edward Perkins / Retail Gazette

Spanish fashion retail giant Zara has reported an eight per cent rise in profits from its UK stores alone, bucking the lacklustre performance of its rivals.

Zara's UK subsidiary posted a £535.2m profit for the year leading up to January 31, while the gross profit rose by 18 per cent to £58.3m during the same period.

The fashion retail chain made the profits after opening two new stores in that period  one in Guildford and another along London’s Oxford Street bringing the UK total to 68 stores.

In addition, Zara UK's outlets in Belfast, Birmingham, Covent Garden, Regent Street and Westfield London were given a refurbish.

While the company reportedly plans to open more stores, it said it would now focus on strengthening sales growth and maintaining tight operating expenses to help bring about more profit.

Zara UK's full-year growth also defies the subdued trend among high street rivals like Marks & Spencer, which posted an 18.5 per cent slump in May.

The news comes just weeks after Zara's parent company Inditex recorded an increase of six per cent in net profits to £438m in the three months to 30 April, thanks to a better-than-expected sales growth of 17 per cent. Zara UK paid Inditex dividends of £47m, up from 2015's £43m.

Inditex, which also owns Pull&Bear, Massimo Dutti, Bershka, and Stradivarius, last week announced its net sales rose 12 per cent year-on-year to £3.9bn in the first quarter of 2016 as it continued expanded its reach worldwide.

Published on Tuesday 21 June by Elias Jahshan

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