Luxottica reported that third quarter net profit rose 34.5% to €101.9 million ($132 mm) from €75.8 million ($98 mm) in the year-ago period. Sales rose 19.7% at to €1.47 billion ($1.90 bn), up 8.6% in constant-currency terms.
For the Wholesale division, the Milan-based company said sales rose 12.4% at constant exchange rates to €518.3 million ($669 mm) in the third quarter from €429.5 million ($554 mm) in the year-ago period.
Sales of Ray-Ban and Oakley brand sunglasses continued their double-digit growth. The two brands are part of Luxottica’s wholesale division, where sales of premium and luxury optical brands grew by approximately 20% in the third quarter.
Operating income for the Wholesale Division amounted to € 94.9 million ($122 mm) in the third quarter, up by 53.8% compared with €61.7 million ($80 mm) for the third quarter of 2009. Operating margin rose to 18.3% of sales during the third quarter versus 14.4% for Q3 2009, confirming the effectiveness of the measures taken to recover margins and a better price point/product mix effect. In the first nine months of 2010, the operating margin was 21.6% of sales (19.7% in Q3 2009).
The Retail division was also up significantly. Net sales for the retail division rose to €946.5 million ($1.22 bn) in Q3 from €793.8 million ($1.02 bn) in Q3 last year. Part of that came from growth at Sunglass Hut, as comps rose 9.6% overall. More specifically in the U.S., comp store sales for Sunglass Hut rose 12.5% in the third quarter.