German giant Hugo Boss expects sales in China to continue to grow rapidly despite calls for a boycott of Western brands over accusations of forced labor in Xinjiang.
CEO Yves Mueller told reporters that the company known for its men smart suits has nearly doubled first-quarter sales in China, and expects this momentum to remain unchanged despite calls for a boycott.
Several Chinese celebrities said earlier they were boycotting Hugo Boss after it made contradictory comments about its purchase of merchandise and cotton from Xinjiang.
A year before the pandemic, sales increased by 29% in China in the first quarter, and Mueller said that this trend continued at the beginning of the second quarter.
The group’s sales were down 10% to $ 597 million, while Hugo Boss just managed to make an operating profit of €1 million. Hugo Boss shares were up 4.2% at today’s trading.
The company said it is confident that sales in the second quarter will nearly double, and hopes for a positive operating profit in this period.
Mueller, who will retire next month to ex-Tommy Hilfiger boss Daniel Greider said about 20% of its sales space was closed at the start of the second quarter, but was optimistic about a recovery in demand as the lockdown eased.