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Tiina Alahuhta-Kasko, the CEO of Marimekko, says the iconic design house has focused especially on improving its profitability and international competitiveness over the past few years.
Tiina Alahuhta-Kasko, the CEO of Marimekko, says the iconic design house has focused especially on improving its profitability and international competitiveness over the past few years.

 

Overseas markets are increasingly important for Marimekko.

“In the first quarter of 2018, our net sales grew by seven per cent and our international sales by 14 per cent, mainly thanks to wholesale sales and royalties in the Asia-Pacific region,” Tiina Alahuhta-Kasko, the chief executive of the iconic design house, commented in the interim report.

Marimekko on Wednesday revealed that international sales accounted for 51 per cent of its first-quarter net sales, representing an increase of four percentage points from the corresponding quarter last year. Its net sales crept up by 1.5 million to 24.1 million euros, whereas its comparable earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation decreased by 100,000 to 1.9 million euros between January and March.

Alahuhta-Kasko said the company has focused particularly on improving its profitability and international competitiveness over the past few years.

“In the current strategy period 2018–2022, we are continuing our long-term work and seeking markedly stronger growth than before. Expanding the customer base, enhancing operational efficiency and utilising the new opportunities afforded by digitisation play a central role in this work,” she stated.

Marimekko also announced it has sold its head office in Herttoniemi, Helsinki, to the OP Financial Group for a debt-free price of 10.4 million euros and signed a long-term tenancy agreement to continue to operate out of its head office. The transaction, it said, will generate a non-recurring capital gain of roughly six million euros for the second quarter of the year.

“The sale and leaseback of the head office building increases our financial flexibility and provides us with the opportunity to focus fully on building growth in the years ahead,” explained Alahuhta-Kasko.

The OP Financial Group, she added, has pledged to invest in refurbishing the building.

Aleksi Teivainen – HT
Photo: Handout/Marimekko

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