Luxury department store Harrods has reported a 15 per cent surge in pre-tax profits for last year, according to figures released today.
Recording a profit rise to £125.3 million for the year ending January 28th 2012, the department store, which was last year sold by previous owner Mohamed Al-Fayed to Qatar Holdings, the investment fund of Qatari Royal Family, is maintaining its strong position despite economic difficulties across the UK high street.
Luxury retailers are performing well amid financial gloom and last week luxury brand Louis Vuitton opened a store in Shanghai as its continues to eye international expansion amid growing popularity.
Harrods also saw sales jump 11 per cent over the period to £651.7 million and this follows reports last week that the company is planning to open a chain of branded hotels.
It is expected that the store will fare particularly well over the course of the Olympics as foreign visitors flood the capital and last week Harrods opened its Christmas World department early in order to entice international consumers to spend in store.
Richard Brown, Vice President of Global Blue UK, said last month that sales from international shoppers have increased 20 per cent in the year-to-date and noted that these consumers are crucial to the British retail sector.
Speaking at the time, Brown commented: “Global shoppers, especially those from emerging markets, in particular the BRICS – are an increasingly important section of the tourism economy in the UK.”
Online trading, as well as the retailer’s presence in outlets at Heathrow and Gatwick airports, has also helped boost results while the hiring of ex-Selfridges Group Finance Director John Edgar, who joined Harrods as Chief Financial Officer earlier this month, is expected to further cement the group’s strong positioning.