Commenting on the results, Giorgio Armani, the Milan-based group's President, said, “The success of a brand lies in its ability to unite creativity and sales, and these results confirm just that, given the reception that our products have had on the market. The strong profitability and liquidity that we have available also allows us to accelerate our investments for future development. This will start with A/X, which we now own at 100 percent, in which we will invest this year and the next in order to obtain a consistent integration in the portfolio of brands of which the Group is comprised.”
Growth was achieved in all of the group's brands and distribution channels. Retail grew by 6.9 percent at current exchange rates and over 14.6 percent at constant exchange rates, wholesale channel grew by 4.2 percent at constant exchange rates. Geographically, growth was very satisfactory in all markets, particularly in Europe where good performance was recorded, especially in France and the UK. The operating margin (EBIT) amounted witnessed an increase of 18.2 percent from the previous year, and it was equal to 18.4 percent of net sales.
Throughout 2013 the group continued to pursue its investment program for the development of its distribution network, which reached 2,473 points of sale worldwide, as well as in other strategic projects for the group's future, such as improving the integration and efficiency of the supply chain.
In recent days, the group has also finalized the acquisition of the remaining 50 percent of A/X Armani Exchange, thus ensuring the full ownership of the brand; it has 270 stores with more than 3,000 employees, and is mainly present in the US market.