Kurt Geiger Earnings Surge

Kurt Geiger Earnings Surge
Inside the new Selfridges shoe department.

British luxury shoe retailer Kurt Geiger Group Holdings Ltd. has capped its fifth consecutive year of growth, thanks to high demand for designer shoes.

For the year ended Jan. 30, earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization increased 21 percent to 14.7 million pounds, or $23.4 million at current exchange.

Revenue surged 17 percent to 162 million pounds, or $258 million. Same-store sales at the company were up 8 percent.

The strong results were boosted by the opening of 12 new standalone Kurt Geiger stores during the past financial year, bringing the total up to 63 worldwide, the company said in a statement on Sunday.

The firm, which operates designer shoe departments for store partners Harrods, Selfridges and Liberty of London, said sales within those channels reached a record high during the year.

Kurt Geiger noted that London-based consumers spent an average of 230 pounds, or $366, per shoe, compared with 180 pounds, or $287, by consumers outside London. And though each additional centimeter in heels costs consumers 20 percent more, the company experienced “record demand” for 4 1/2-inch platforms last year.

Kurt Geiger said EBITDA and comparable-store sales in the first six months of 2010 are already ahead of last year’s numbers, and the company is on track to potentially open another 40 stores in the U.K. over the next five years.

“These financial results demonstrate the continued success of … our strategy to invest and expand in our own brand stores … in the face of a challenging economic backdrop,” Neil Clifford, CEO of Kurt Geiger, said in a statement.

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