H&M looks out of fashion as summer sales disappoint
H&M’s sales stagnated over the summer as it lost ground to Zara owner Inditex.
The Swedish fashion chain said sales in June, July and August were “flat” year-on-year.
Total sales reached 34.4 billion.
Analysts said H&M is coming under pressure from both sides: from Zara, which is attracting more ambitious shoppers, and from Primark, which offers a cheaper alternative.
And while H&M is struggling, arch-rivals Inditex and Primark have reported solid sales growth this week.
Squeezed: H&M sales stagnated over the summer as it lost ground to Zara owner Inditex
“This is very weak compared to Inditex’s second-quarter acceleration,” said William Woods, an analyst at brokerage Bernstein.
Inditex, which also owns the Massimo Dutti, Pull & Bear and Bershka brands, as well as Zara, saw sales rise by 13.5 percent in the first half of the year to £14.6 billion.
The figures were a boost for the president of Inditex, Marta Ortega Pérez, who last year took the reins of the company that her father founded in 1975.
Similarly, Associated British Foods, owner of Primark, revealed this week that the fashion chain’s sales this year are on track to be 15 percent higher than last year.