Mulberry said in its preliminary results announcement that total revenue grew by 8 percent to 168.1 million pounds (214 million dollars) for the year ended March 31, 2017. Profit before tax was 7.5 million pounds (9.5 million dollars) against 6.2 million pounds (7.8 million dollars) last year.
Commenting on the company’s annual results, Thierry Andretta, Mulberry CEO said in a statement, "During the year we have made good progress. Our sales and profits are growing, enhancing our strong cash position. We have advanced our international growth strategy with a new partnership in Asia and the continued expansion of our omni-channel offer in key markets."
Mulberry said that during the year, a significant number of new products were launched under the creative direction of Johnny Coca. The Zipped Bayswater became an immediate bestseller since its launch during October 2016 and the family will be further extended in coming seasons. The bag was highlighted during the marketing campaign, "Modern Heritage", which ran during April and May 2017.
Global digital sales were up 19 percent to 25.5 million pounds (32 million dollars) for the period, accounting for 15 percent of group revenue. Retail sales including digital were up 8 percent to 128.3 million pounds (163 million dollars) for the period with like-for-like sales up 5 percent.
A number of services were added to the Group's omni-channel offer during the period and local mulberry.com sites were introduced in China and Korea. In the USA, a local distribution centre was established in order to facilitate local fulfilment. There were 67 directly operated stores at the end of the period. The year witnessed relocation of the Covent Garden and Bicester stores; and acquisition of the store in Sydney, Australia and through the Mulberry Asia agreement, signed at the end of the financial year, the group acquired one store in Hong Kong post year-end.
Mulberry will acquire two stores in China, and one concession in Taiwan during the financial year ending March 2018. In North America, two stores were closed, New York (Madison Avenue) and Washington, the digital offer was enhanced and sales commenced to the Nordstrom department store chain.
Wholesale revenue, comprising sales to partner stores and selective multi-brand wholesale accounts, increased 7 percent to 39.8 million pounds (50.6 million dollars). The franchise store network at the period end had a total of 52 stores in Asia, Europe and the Middle East. The four stores acquired by Mulberry Asia will join the group's own Retail store portfolio during the financial year to March 2018. Selective new wholesale accounts were opened in Europe, North America and Asia.
Profit before tax was 7.5 million pounds (9.5 million dollars) against 6.2 million pounds (7.8 million dollars) last year, after accounting for non-recurring costs relating to activities in North Asia, adverse currency movements and non-cash store impairments. The board of Mulberry has recommended the payment of a dividend of 5.0p per ordinary share.
Like-for-like retail sales including digital were up 1 percent for the 10 weeks to June 3, 2017. In the UK, like-for-like sales were up 2 percent and the company said, sales continue to benefit from an increase in tourist spending in London, although domestic demand has been softer. International like-for-like sales show a weakening in non-strategic locations with management continuing to focus on the optimisation of the store network.