Luxury giant Kering says profit up despite Gucci slide
French luxury giant Kering reported on Wednesday a rise in annual profit despite a slump at its flagship brand Gucci.
Kering, whose empire includes Yves Saint Laurent, Bottega Veneta and Alexander McQueen, said its net profit climbed 14 percent to 3.6 billion euros (US$3.9 billion) in 2022.
Sales jumped 15 percent to 20 billion euros.
"All our Houses posted record revenues and contributed to higher operating income in 2022. But these good performances were not uniformly up to our ambitions and potential," group chairman Francois-Henri Pinault said in a statement.
"Beyond the challenges some of our Houses faced, notably toward the end of the year, we are convinced that we are pursuing the right strategy for the long term," said Pinault.
Gucci sales dropped 11 percent in the fourth quarter, weighed down by China which still had COVID restrictions most of last year.
The world's second-biggest economy, a major market for luxury brands, lifted its zero-COVID policy in December.
"The year 2022 is clearly not up to our expectations (for Gucci) and what we think about the brand's potential," said Jean-Marc Duplaix, the group's chief financial officer.
The departure of renowned Italian fashion designer Alessandro Michele as Gucci's creative director, which was announced in November, "did not have an impact as such on sales", Duplaix said.
Michele was replaced by another Italian designer, Sabato De Sarno, in January.