Hermes Reports Strong Sales As Demand Rockets
The Christmas shopping rush has helped Hermes report a 16.4% hike in sales at constant exchange rates.
The French luxury brand, known for its silk scarves†and high-end handbags, said revenues hit 3.48bn euros (£2.98bn) in 2012.
"Sales exceeded the target for the year, driven by persistently robust momentum in the fourth quarter," Hermes said in a statement.
The company said it grew by an "impressive" 15% in Europe despite the on-going eurozone debt crisis, and by 14% in the US.
Sales in Asia excluding Japan were 25% higher, and it opened two new branches in Taiwan and China.
The results were boosted by what it described "persistently strong demand" for its leather goods, which include its iconic Kelly and Birkin handbags, costing around £10,000 each.
Its ready-to-wear and accessories division grew by 22%, while its watch sales were up 17%.
The introduction of new colours and materials helped its silk and textiles division grow by 16%.
Hermes, which is due to report its full-year results on March 21, said its operating margin is expected to be "slightly above the all-time high achieved in 2011".
Last month, Hermes' rival LVMH - the world's biggest luxury brand, which owns Louis Vuitton - also reported sales growth in its leather goods division.
The world's second largest luxury brand, PPR - which owns Yves Saint Laurent and Gucci - will report its annual results on Friday.