Zara owner hails sales boost from hot weather and polka-dot dress

Zara Inditex

Zara owner Inditex has said sales surged during the first half of the year as the high street fashion brand was bolstered by warm weather and the success of its highly popular black & white polka-dot dress.

Indetix, the world’s largest clothes retailer, said sales jumped 7% to €12.8 billion (£11.5 billion) in the six months to July as it shrugged off the tough retail market conditions.

The Spanish group said like-for-like sales during the period increased by 5%, while earnings before interest and tax rose by 8% to 3.4 billion euros (£3.04 billion).

The company, which had 7,420 stores across the world at the end of July, said it benefited from the roll-out of Zara online to new locations such as Brazil and the UAE.

The group, which also includes Pull & Bear, Massimo Dutti, Stradivarius and Bershka, has shut smaller stores to focus on large spaces in prime shopping areas and rapidly growing online sales.

Analysts highlighted that the success of Zara’s polka-dot dress, which was so popular that it had its own Instagram account, reflected that the brand’s product ranges were continuing to be welcomed by UK customers.

Zara

The £39.99 dress gained cult status as a must-have item during the summer, selling out in numerous UK stores.

Inditex added that strong sales have continued into the second half of the year, with sales across both stores and online rising 8% in the past six weeks.

Pablo Isla, executive chairman of Inditex, underlined the “strong first-half performance reflected in these figures, with like-for-like growth across all brands and geographies”.

He added: “The investments we have made in the stores, as well as in logistics and technology, have been key elements in the development of our customer-focused integrated online and offline store platform.”