high single-digit growth in currency-adjusted sales and earnings.
In the fourth quarter of 2013, sales adjusted for currency effects increased by 10 percent. In euro, this constitutes an increase of 7 percent to 649 million euros (904.8 million dollars).
“We have continued writing the success story that is Hugo Boss over the past fiscal year,” comments Claus-Dietrich Lahrs, CEO of Hugo Boss, adding, “We have been able to further enhance the quality of our brand presence. This year and beyond, we will profit from the greater strength and global reach of the Boss brand. I am confident that we will accelerate our rate of growth compared to the prior year.”
In the fourth quarter growth in Europe was up 13 percent, Americas 9 percent, Asia/Pacific 5 percent. In the wholesale business, sales adjusted for currency effects were up 1 percent year on year, while sales in the group's own retail business rose 17 percent including factory outlets and the online business. Comparable store sales in the group's own retail business increased 3 percent adjusted for currency effects.
Supported by double-digit growth in Great Britain and France, Europe was the fastest growing region with a sales increase of 7 percent after currency adjustments in 2013. In the Americas, revenues adjusted for currency effects increased by 6 percent, driven in particular by growth in the United States. Asia reported sales growth of 4 percent after currency adjustments. Despite higher selling expenses as a result of the expansion of the Group's own retail business, EBITDA before special items increased by 7 percent, the adjusted EBITDA margin increased by 70 basis points to 23.2 percent.
Hugo Boss plans high single-digit growth in sales in 2014 adjusted for currency effects, and to thereby exceed the prior year's increase. All regions are expected to contribute to this target. The group again anticipates double-digit growth in its own retail business, while the wholesale channel is expected to remain broadly stable. In line with the sales increase, the operating result (EBITDA before special items) is forecasted to grow at a high single-digit rate as well.
In light of the positive development expected in 2014, the group anticipates that it will generate sales of 3 billion euros (4.1 billion dollars) in 2015. The Metzingen headquartered company has also set itself the target to increase the adjusted EBITDA margin to 25 percent in the medium term.