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Prada's Market Cap Grows by Nearly $3 Billion After a 44% Increase in Earnings

March 8, 2024
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Prada experienced a substantial boost in market value, surging by approximately $2.70 billion, following the release of its annual financial results that surpassed analysts' expectations. This remarkable performance sets Prada apart from other European luxury-goods companies grappling with a general slowdown in the industry.

The Hong Kong-listed shares of the renowned Italian luxury-fashion powerhouse closed nearly 15% higher at HK$63.90 on Friday, according to Trade Algo, translating to a market value of nearly HK$163.51 billion, equivalent to approximately $20.91 billion.

Prada reported a notable 17% increase in revenue for the year 2023 on a constant-currency basis, accompanied by a striking 44% surge in net profit compared to 2022. The company's sales and earnings not only met but exceeded analysts' expectations, according to a consensus gathered by Visible Alpha.

Customers exhibited a penchant for Prada's namesake and Miu Miu brands, driving a 17% increase in retail sales, which constitute a significant portion of Prada's revenue, at constant exchange rates. The Asia-Pacific region witnessed a substantial surge of 24% in retail sales, with Japan reporting an impressive growth rate of 44%.

AlphaValue analyst Jie Zhang highlighted that Prada's year-end performance was buoyed by the rebound in Chinese tourist spending in domestic destinations like Hong Kong and Macau, as well as neighboring Asian countries.

Prada's stellar performance aligns with the positive trends reported by other European luxury-goods giants, especially those more exposed to high-end consumers. Last month, Hermes, renowned for its Birkin bags, expressed confidence for 2024 after a surge in fourth-quarter sales, attributed to its affluent customer base. Similarly, Richemont and Brunello Cucinelli reported positive outcomes due to their focus on a wealthier clientele.

In contrast, Salvatore Ferragamo and Burberry faced lackluster results, and Hugo Boss disappointed with lower-than-expected forecasts for 2024. Kering, the owner of Gucci, acknowledged that its profit would be impacted by planned investments in its fashion houses, aiming to revitalize its core brand.

The surge in spending by affluent consumers on high-end items such as handbags, jewelry, and garments post-pandemic had propelled years of strong results in the luxury-goods industry. However, sales growth decelerated last year due to pandemic-related restrictions, the conflict in Ukraine, and the emergence of high inflation and rising interest rates, negatively affecting a younger and less affluent clientele.

China's economic challenges exacerbated the broader industry slowdown, with the country being the world's largest luxury market before the pandemic. The prolonged downturn in the property sector, weak exports, and subdued consumer demand contributed to China's economic woes.

Prada's Chief Executive, Andrea Guerra, outlined the company's priority for 2024, emphasizing the commitment to enhancing brand desirability and retail excellence. This strategic focus aligns with Prada's continued efforts to navigate and excel in the evolving landscape of the luxury-goods industry.

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Cathy Hills
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