Tiffany & Co’s worldwide net sales increased by 9 per cent to reach US$895 million in the first quarter (ended April 30) of this year.
In the Americas and Europe total sales rose 6 per cent to US$408 million and US$93 million respectively while in the Asia-Pacific region total sales jumped 15 per cent to US$223 million.
Total sales in Japan increased 2 per cent to US$145 million despite a negative translation effect from a weakening yen while “other” sales tripled from US$9 million to US$27 million, primarily reflecting last year’s conversion of five independently-operated Tiffany & Co stores in the United Arab Emirates to company-operated stores.
Announcing the company’s first quarter results, Tiffany & Co chairman and chief executive officer Michael Kowalski said the company was “pleased with this start to the year”.
“Worldwide, first quarter sales exceeded our expectations, enabling us to improve our sales leverage on fixed expenses and achieve earnings growth,” he said.
“In addition, we celebrated Tiffany’s 175th anniversary with our very successful Blue Book event and promotional activities surrounding the debut of the film The Great Gatsby, for which we designed the jewellery.”
Kowalski concluded that while the company’s first quarter sales and earnings exceeded expectations “we are maintaining our earnings forecast for the full year, mindful of continuing soft sales results in the Americas and the negative translation effect of a weaker yen”.
“However, we remain focused on exciting initiatives for this year, including jewelry introductions highlighted by our Great Gatsby and Ziegfeld collections, the Harmony engagement ring and a reinterpretation of our iconic Atlas collection.”
The company, which currently operates 275 stores (115 in the Americas, 66 in Asia-Pacific, 55 in Japan, 34 in Europe and five in the UAE) also plans to open 16 new stores this year (six in the Americas, seven in Asia-Pacific and three in Europe) and close one each in Japan and Taiwan