Fashionable figures as Burberry cashes in on slump in pound

Burberry has had a boost from tourists travelling to the UK. Picture: PA
Burberry has had a boost from tourists travelling to the UK. Picture: PA
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Luxury fashion label Burberry has hailed an “exceptional” festive performance in the UK as booming tourist trade helped send sales surging by around 40 per cent.

The group – famous for its trench coats and check scarves – said it continued to receive a boost from tourists flocking to London to take advantage of the Brexit-hit pound, while a well-received advertising campaign also helped drive strong demand from UK customers.

The solid UK performance contributed to a 3 per cent rise in overall comparable sales across the group in the three months to 31 December, with an improvement in some under-pressure markets including Hong Kong and France.

Christopher Bailey, chief creative officer and outgoing chief executive of Burberry, said: “With a record number of views of our festive film and strong demand for new products in our collections, this third-quarter improvement reflects early progress from our plans to drive Burberry’s performance for the long term.”

The group said the “continued exceptional performance in the UK” was equally driven by “travelling luxury customers from all regions and from domestic customers”.

READ MORE: Burberry profits slip despite lift from weaker pound

It noted that it had returned to growth in Asia Pacific over its Christmas quarter, with “high single-digit percentage” sales growth in China and narrowed sales falls in Hong Kong.

Trading remained weak in Continental Europe, but the firm said France saw better trading compared with the previous three months.

Its festive best-sellers included its Banner handbags, rucksacks, as well as its buckle coat.

The group also revealed it attracted more than 22 million viewings for its Christmas campaign short film, starring Sienna Miller and Dominic West, which celebrated the life of its founder, Thomas Burberry.

Bailey is also stepping down from the role of chief executive, to become president and chief creative officer as part of the overhaul.

The group confirmed on Monday that his successor, Marco Gobbetti, will join the company on 27 January, initially holding the role of executive until becoming chief executive in July.

Hargreaves Lansdown analyst George Salmon said: “Investors will be pleased to hear that the latest collection has been well received, but then again design has never been the group’s problem. The crucial thing for Burberry is how demand in the Far East holds up.”

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