Ecco reported profit after tax increased 7.6 percent in 2014 while revenues grew 9.1 percent. The gains came despite challenging conditions in some markets, most notably in Russia and the Ukraine, which suffered serious economic problems.
“2014 was a year of many challenges, but by responding quickly, and thanks to a strong performance throughout the Ecco Group, we succeeded in pulling off a good result our best ever, as a matter of fact,” said Ecco CEO, Dieter Kasprzak.
Ecco said it took an important step forward in 2014 with its new 2020 Strategy.
“In the coming years, Ecco will pursue a more active strategy targeted at growth, with investments in all consumer-facing activities,” explains Ecco CFO, Steen Borgholm.
Globally, Ecco plans to open more than 400 shops over the next six years, and in 2015 sales and retail investments will increase by 75 percent.
The US market is one of Ecco’s three most important markets globally, and it shows continued growth.
The business, which is managed out of Londonderry, NH, where it also has its central distribution facility, foresees strong developments in 2015, in both its wholesale and retail activities, and notably in e-commerce, said Dave Quel, President of Ecco USA Inc.
“Ecco is investing heavily in its retail activities,” he explains, “so that Ecco deliv-ers an even better shopping experience and service levels to our customers in the years to come. In 2015, we expect to open a number of new shops and shop-in-shops, adding to the 220 we already have.
“Our success in 2014 was across all product groups,” he adds. “But Ecco’s new Ladies’ collection was particularly successful in 2014, showing solid double-digit growth.”
- The pretax profit increased from €165 million to €176 million – an increase of 6.6 percent. The pretax profit is equivalent to more than 15 percent of the net revenue.
- Profit after tax also increased, by 7.6 percent, from €106 million to €114 million.
- Net revenue rose, from €1.1 billion to €1.2 billion.
- Equity increased by 15.2 percent, from €462 million to €532 million.
- And, for the first time, the Ecco Leather Division achieved a turnover of more than €100 million. The Leather Division supplies Ecco as well as external brands.
Looking ahead to 2015, Ecco will still face market challenges in the Ukraine and Russia.
“But, overall in 2015, we expect a result on par with 2014, with the aim of growing our profits in the following years,” said Borgholm.
Ecco products are sold in 88 countries at 3,060 Ecco shops and shop-in-shops, and at more than 14,000 sales points around the world. The company is family-owned and employs 19,800 people worldwide. In 1990, Ecco established its own subsidiary in the U.S.