The H&M group’s sales development in the third quarter 2019

In the third quarter of 2019, i.e. during the period June 1, 2019 to August 31, 2019, the H&M group’s net sales increased by 12 % and amounted to SEK 62,572 million (55,821 million). In local currencies, net sales increased by 8 %.

Well-received summer collections and increased market share confirm that the H&M group is on the right track with its transformation work to meet the customers’ ever-increasing expectations. Activity levels related to the transformation work have remained high in the third quarter.

H & M Hennes & Mauritz AB Nine-month report

Nine months (1 December 2018 – 31 August 2019)

  • The H&M group’s net sales increased by 11 % to SEK 171,061 m (153,986) during the first nine months of the financial year. In local currencies, net sales increased by 6 %. The ongoing transformation work has contributed to continued positive sales development with more full-price sales, lower markdowns and increased market share.
  • Profit after financial items increased by 6 % to SEK 11,988 m (11,287). The group’s profit after tax increased to SEK 9,231 m (9,109), corresponding to SEK 5.58 (5.50) per share. Profit after tax in the previous year was positively affected by one-off tax income of SEK 418 m as a result of the US tax reform (Tax Cuts & Jobs Act).

Third quarter (1 June 2019 – 31 August 2019)

  • With well-received summer collections, the H&M group’s net sales increased by 12 % to SEK 62,572 m (55,821) in the third quarter. In local currencies, net sales increased by 8 % compared with the corresponding quarter the previous year.
  • Online sales in the third quarter increased by 30 % in SEK and by 25 % in local currencies.
  • Gross profit increased by 13 % to SEK 31,815 m (28,091). This corresponds to a gross margin of 50.8 % (50.3).
  • Profit after financial items increased by 25 % to SEK 5,011 m (4,012). The group’s profit after tax increased to SEK 3,859 m (3,099), corresponding to SEK 2.33 (1.87) per share.
  • The stock-in-trade continues to improve. As a proportion of sales, the book value of the stock-in-trade in SEK was lower than at the same point in time the previous year. Adjusted for currency effects the stock-in-trade decreased somewhat.
  • H&M was successfully launched on India’s leading ecommerce platform Myntra in August. The reception has exceeded the company’s high expectations.
  • Sales in local currencies in September 2019 increased by 8 % compared to September the previous year.
  • The H&M group is ranked as one of the world’s best retailers for sustainability in the Dow Jones Sustainability World Index.
  • The integration of the online and physical stores continues at full speed.
  • The H&M group continues to actively optimise the store portfolio through increased consolidation in established markets while continuing its expansion in growth markets. The net addition of new stores for full-year 2019 will be around 120, somewhat fewer than previously communicated.

Comments by Karl-Johan Persson, CEO:

“Well-received summer collections and increased market share show that we are on the right track with our transformation work to meet customers’ ever-increasing expectations. Continued increases in full-price sales and decreases in markdowns contributed to a 26 % increase in operating profit in the third quarter, all while maintaining a high level of activity in our transformation work.

Growth was good in many markets, including the US where sales in local currencies rose by 19 %, Poland by 20 %, Italy by 15 %, Russia by 12 % and India by 29 %. Sales also developed strongly in South America – in Chile, for example, where we grew by 32 %. However, things were a bit tougher in some of our franchise markets due to challenging macro factors.

Total sales in the group increased by 12 % in SEK and 8 % in local currencies in the third quarter. The sales growth was driven by both stores and online, with a very strong increase in online sales of 30 % in SEK and 25 % in local currencies.

Customer focus is our highest priority. We are therefore continuing to invest in the best combination of fashion, quality, price and sustainability. And to make the customer experience even more inspiring and easy, we are integrating our digital and physical channels more and more – including through the continued rollout of Click & Collect and online returns in store, along with improved search functions, more flexible payment options and faster deliveries. We are also developing innovative new features, including services aimed at sustainability and reuse.

In parallel with the integration of stores and online shopping we keep optimising the store portfolio, including more consolidation in established markets and expansion in growth markets. We are also expanding via new channels. At the end of the quarter H&M launched on Myntra, India’s leading ecommerce platform, while & Other Stories opened on Tmall in China and H&M online was launched in Indonesia, followed by Thailand in September. H&M also opened its first store in Belarus, bringing us to a total of 73 markets. All the launches and openings got a good reception. Through our continued investments in tech and the supply chain we also plan later this year to offer our customers the chance to shop online from COS, Weekday, Monki, & Other Stories and ARKET in up to 70 or so new markets.

Our ongoing transformation work to meet customers’ ever-increasing expectations is bearing fruit. The new season has got off to a promising start, with a positive reception for our early autumn collections. Looking ahead, we remain humble considering the challenges brought by the rapid shift in fashion retail. Our transformation work is therefore continuing at a fast pace in all parts of the company. We are convinced that this will contribute to positive development for the H&M group for many years to come.”

 Strategic focus areas

The rapid shift in fashion retail continues. We are driving our transformation work based on our strategic focus areas in order to meet customers’ ever-increasing expectations and to future-proof the H&M group.

Create the best customer offering

Product assortment – secure the best combination of fashion, quality, price and sustainability for all the brands.

Physical stores – continued development of new concepts and optimisation of the store portfolio.

Online stores – improvements such as faster and more flexible delivery and payment options.

Continued integration of our physical stores and online stores to enhance the customer experience.

Fast, efficient and flexible product flow

Make the supply chain even faster, more flexible and more efficient.

Initiatives within advanced data analytics and AI.

Investments in infrastructure – our tech foundation

Continued investments in our tech infrastructure including robust scalable platforms that enable faster development of various customer apps and new technologies.

Adding growth

Digital expansion into new markets.

Physical stores – continued expansion with a focus on growth markets.

Develop new concepts and business models.

H & M Hennes & Mauritz AB (publ) was founded in Sweden in 1947 and is quoted on Nasdaq Stockholm. H&M’s business idea is to offer fashion and quality at the best price in a sustainable way. In addition to H&M, the group includes the brands COS, Monki, Wee kday, & Other Stories, H&M Home and ARKET as well as Afound. The H&M group has 49 online markets and more than  4900 stores in 72 markets, including franchise markets. In 2018, net sales were SEK 210 billion. The number of employees amounts to more than 177000.