Luxottica 3Q Sales Fall; Backs Guidance for 2017

By Euan Conley Features Dow Jones Newswires

Luxottica Group SpA (LUX.MI) said Monday that underlying sales fell in the third quarter due to restructuring and weather-related store closures.

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The Italian luxury eyewear maker said sales for the three months ended Sept. 30 were 2.15 billion euros ($2.52 billion) compared with EUR2.22 billion for the same period last year. Sales declined 3.5% on an underlying basis driven primarily by the restructuring of its Oakley brand and a trio of hurricanes that forced Luxottica to close hundreds of stores over a week-long period. Sales, however, increased 0.8% based on constant currencies, it said.

The company confirmed guidance for 2017 saying it's on track to meet the target of low-to-mid single digit rise in sales at constant currencies, and added that it expects profit growth to rise in line with sales this year.

"Thanks to a return to growth in the first two weeks of October and the solid profitability and cash flow of the first nine months, we confirm the outlook for 2017," said Luxottica's chief executive officer, Massimo Vian, and its executive chariman, Leonard Del Vecchio. The company added that they expect an acceleration in growth in 2018.

The Milan-based maker of Ray-Ban sunglasses agreed in January to merge with Essilor SA (EI.FR), the French lens manufacturer, a deal which would create a company with a combined market value of around EUR46.3 billion. However, the European Commission's antitrust regulator needs to approve the merger, with a decision expected by February.

Write to Euan Conley at euan.conley@dowjones.com

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(END) Dow Jones Newswires

October 23, 2017 12:57 ET (16:57 GMT)