Burberry's Profit Falls After Perfume Hit

Burberry reports a fall of almost 30% in profit in the first half of this year, but its revenue beat expectations despite a slowdown in demand from Asia.

It said pre-tax profit over the six months to the end September was £112m - which includes one-off items worth £61m - compared with £159m for the same period in 2011.  

But the luxury fashion brand's underlying business, if the one-exceptional charges are stripped out, performed better than expected, with pre-tax profit up 6% at £173m.

Last month the luxury fashion firm reassured investors that sales had steadied towards the end of its second quarter after issuing a shock profit warning in September.

Burberry's first-half revenue was up 6% to £883m, but growth slowed to 5% in the second quarter, compared with 11% in the first.

Its retail revenue also grew - up 9% to £577m - despite what chief executive Angela Ahrendts described as a "challenging external environment".

The exception items included a one-off charge related to the termination of a fragrance and beauty licence deal, as Burberry plans to bring its perfume business in-house. 

Ms Ahrendts said this marked a "significant brand and business opportunities".

"Our global teams are excited to partner with long-standing distributors, suppliers and customers to optimise these under-penetrated categories," she said.

"One consistent brand expression, leveraged across all categories, will underpin future growth in the beauty division and our existing core business."

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