SMCP continues to soar as sales rise globally

SMCP has been one of the contemporary market’s biggest success stories of recent years and it looks like that success story is continuing. The company issued its Q2 results on the last day of July and described them as “superb”.


SMCP's brands continue to win new fans globally


In a fashion retail world where businesses are increasingly cautious about their prospects, the figures underlined just how strong the appeal of the company's portfolio of brands, Sandro, Maje and Claudie Pierlot, has become.

So what actually happened in Q2? Currency-neutral sales rose a healthy 15.2%, but while the performance on a reported basis was slower, this wasn't a case of the company trying to emphasise the good figure over a bad one. In fact, reported sales rose an impressive 12.9% to reach €241.3 million. 

And like-for-like sales across the trio brands rose 5.8% for the first half as a whole with the performance proving strong both in its physical stores and online. The company said that “the successful implementation of the digital strategy” was a major driver and that online sales now account for 14.3% of the total.

By brand, Sandro really powered ahead with a 14.7% sales increase on a currency-neutral basis, boosted by “very dynamic trends internationally and a solid acceleration in digital.” The company has been expanding this brand fast in recent periods and in the last 12 months it opened 33 directly operated stores in locations as varied as Stockholm, Miami, Zhengzhou and Dubai. 

But if you thought Sandro was on a roll, it seems that Maje has been growing even faster. Its currency-neutral sales were up 16.6% in Q2 as the label's 20th anniversary activity helped drive up brand awareness globally. The company also opened 33 owned stores for Maje in Europe, the US, and China, the latter including its 100th location on the mainland, in Beijing.

Claudie Pierlot couldn’t quite match its portfolio-mates’ performances, but a 13% increase and 23 new directly-operated stores were nothing to worry about. 

Was there any bad news in the report? There was one small cloud in the SMCP sky as sales in its core market, France, dipped 0.7%, although the company cited the tough market environment there as evidence that its brands remain resilient at home.

Clearly, it was the international performance that drove sales higher during the quarter with international currency-neutral sales up 26.5% and now accounting for 64% of total turnover.  The rise in Asia-Pacific was 47.7%, while EMEA was up 15.1% with “robust growth” and expansion in Italy and Germany. The Americas was even better in a 27.1% increase, “driven by high traffic and the conversion rate in the brick & mortar store network, as well as an exponential growth in e-commerce.”

With all this going for it, it's no shock that the company was more optimistic about its guidance for the full year. It had previously expected a currency-neutral sales increase of between 11% and 13% but has now come down firmly on the side of the higher figure.

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