Page last updated at 10:32 GMT, Wednesday, 17 March 2010

Zara owner Inditex sees profit boosted by new stores

Zara store
About 40% of Zara's new store this year will be in Asia.

Inditex, the owner of the Zara fashion chain, has reported a 5% rise in profits for 2009 after it opened 343 new stores during the year.

It reported a net profit of £1.3bn euros ($1.8bn; £1.17bn) on sales of 11.1bn euros in the year to 31 January.

However sales were flat once the effect of the new stores were stripped out.

Inditex plans to open up to 425 new shops this year, including its first Indian outlets from May. It says 40% of new shops will be in Asia during 2010.

The firm had 4,607 stores at the end of January - 91 of them in the UK under the Zara, Massimo Dutti, Pull and Bear, Bershka and Zara Home brands.

There are plans to launch an online store, coinciding with the autumn and winter season.

While Inditex is a Spanish company, about 70% of its sales come from outside of Spain.



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