Thursday 8 December 2016

Fast fashion retailer H&M reports 12pc increase in sales

Published 17/11/2015 | 02:30

Pop singer Katy Perry, who is the face of H&M’s Happy and Merry Holiday campaign
Pop singer Katy Perry, who is the face of H&M’s Happy and Merry Holiday campaign

Hennes & Mauritz, the world's second-biggest fashion retailer, reported a 12pc year-on-year rise in October sales in local currencies yesterday, just below expectations.

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The mean forecast in a Reuters poll of analysts had been for a 13pc increase in the second month of its fiscal fourth quarter.

H&M, which trails Zara owner Inditex, said its tally of stores was 3,807 on October 31, 2015, compared to 3,437 on October 31 last year.

H&M, based in Sweden where collective bargaining and talks between employers, employees and unions play a big role in wage-setting, sources mainly in Asian low-cost countries.

Earlier this month, the group agreed a deal with the IndustriALL Global Union to jointly train its direct suppliers and their workers in how to improve industrial relations.

The Asian garment industry has been shaken by labour unrest over low wages and poor working conditions, such as pay protests in Cambodia last year in which police shot dead several workers.

H&M sustainability chief Anna Gedda said H&M and the union association would train managements and workers in negotiating wages and working conditions, and promote collective agreements and freedom of association.

They would also train the parties in how to solve conflicts, she said.

The focus is initially on Bangladesh, Cambodia, Myanmar and Turkey where around 600 direct suppliers in the four countries will start receive training 2016.

Irish Independent

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