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Puma Records Another Huge Profit Rise

Puma AG, the German sportswear, footwear and equipment giant, posted another huge rise in quarterly profit on the back of soaring sales on Thursday. Figures released by the company showed net profit more than doubled to €69 million ($80.2 million) from €33.7 million last year as sales jumped 37.8 percent year-on-year to €402.3 million. Puma said clothing sales in the latest quarter rose 46 percent to €110.2 million, while footwear sales jumped 34.7 percent to €267.5 million and accessories sales rose 36.5 percent to €24.5 million. While Europe and the United States both saw sales gains of between 20 and 35 percent, Asia/Pacific Rim region sales surged a massive 278.2 percent to €41.6 million. Puma CEO Jochen Zeitz said the strong performance and the outlook for the entire year confirmed the company's sustained momentum which was likely to last well into 2004. He added that, based on the strong performance during the first three quarters, full year pre-tax profit should reach at least €245 million.