REPORT In 2014, the Hermes group's consolidated revenue totaled 4,118.6 million euros (4,669.9 million dollars), an 11.1 percent rise at constant exchange rates. After adjusting for the negative impact of currencies, primarily due to the weakness of the Yen, growth was 9.7 percent. In the fourth quarter, the group witnessed growth 9.6 percent at constant exchange rates following buoyant activity in the group's own stores and over 11.6 percent at constant exchange rates.
The strong growth in sales generated by the group's own stores in 2014 with over 12.7 percent results from solid progressions in all regions. Hermès continued development of its distribution network with the opening of China's first Maison Hermès in Shanghai in September and the opening, renovation or extension of over fifteen outlets.
America with over 15 percent rise confirmed its development potential. In the United States, the Atlanta store was extended, and in Brazil the group resumed control of the Sao Paulo concession. Japan with over 13 rise achieved an excellent year, confirming the positive trend observed in the first nine months. Non-Japan Asia saw a rise of over 13 percent despite recent events in Hong Kong and the slowdown in China's luxury market. Europe with over 7 percent growth continued to progress in a difficult financial climate. Five stores were extended or renovated in France and Spain.
The growth was remarkable in Leather Goods and Saddlery with over 15 percent that was supported by the increased production capacities of the two new sites in Isère and Charente. Plans to build workshops in Héricourt and l'Allan are underway in Franche-Comté. Ready-to-wear and Accessories with over 12 percent rise have been boosted by the success of the latest ready-to-wear collections and fashion accessories, with particular buoyancy in footwear. The Silk and Textiles business line witnessed over 8 percent increase. A new online showroom and store for Hermès silk lamaisondescarres.com was successfully launched in September. Perfumes continued to grow with over 10 percent growth. Watches segment, however decline 11 percent.
Other Hermès sectors grew over 15 percent. Jewellery, which presented its new haute bijouterie collection at the 24 Faubourg Saint Honoré store in Paris, made a significant contribution to this dynamic with the success of the latest collections in gold.
On 2 September 2014 Hermès International and Louis Vuitton Moët Hennessy (LVMH) reached a settlement agreement in which LVMH undertook to distribute all the Hermès shares held by the LVMH Group to its shareholders, with the company Christian Dior distributing these shares to its own shareholders.
The annual results will be published on March 25, 2015. Despite the negative impact of currencies, operating margin is set to be slightly higher in the region of 31 percent in 2014, slightly lower than the all-time high achieved in 2013. In 2015, despite the economic, geopolitical and monetary uncertainties over the world; the group aims at a sales increase of 8 percent at constant rates.