Burberry will be unable to meet its full-year revenue guidance if softer demand in the global luxury market continues, the British luxury company said Thursday.
Revenue grew 1 percent on a comparable basis in the 12 weeks through September, Burberry said, slowing sharply compared to a 18 percent jump the previous quarter. Sales in Mainland China contracted 8 percent while performance in the already weakened US market continued to slide.
The company warned it was unlikely to meet previous targets for double-digit growth this year, and that operating profit would fall at the lower end of its guidance. Shares dropped almost 10 percent in early trading.
”There’s a challenging macro environment coming across from all regions,” CEO Jonathan Akeroyd said on a call with press on Thursday. “I think this is something that has been quite unique, because historically if you get softness in one region you’re able to pick it up in another.”
Luxury players across the industry are facing diminished demand from luxury shoppers after a post-pandemic boom. LVMH and Richemont both saw growth in the most recent quarter slow sharply compared with the first half of the year. At Kering, sales fell 9 percent.
The stakes are particularly high for Burberry, which is in the midst of rolling out a refreshed image and product lineup under a new designer, Daniel Lee. Turnaround stories like Burberry “suffer an even greater headwind in slowing markets, as consumers would typically cut their shopping lists and flock to ‘must have’ brands,” Bernstein analyst Luca Solca wrote in a note to clients.
Still, Akeroyd flagged customer excitement and high sell-through for Lee’s debut collection as well as refreshed lineup of carry-over items like handbags. Daniel’s debut collection, which was revealed during London Fashion Week in February, arrived in stores roughly six weeks ago.
Akeroyd said it’s too soon to comment in-depth on the commercial performance, but noted consumers are responding well to new bag shapes like the Knight and Shield pouches, as well as tweaks to the core outerwear category.
Inside Burberry’s Growth Strategy
In an interview with BoF the day of his first major speech to investors, Burberry’s new CEO Jonathan Akeroyd outlined his plan for growing the British house into a £5 billion megabrand alongside designer Daniel Lee.