Fast Retailing, the Japanese owner of clothing retailer Uniqlo, has reported a gross profit of Y845.2bn ($5.5bn), an increase of 14% in the first half (H1) of fiscal year 2024 (FY24), compared to Y741.5bn in the same period of FY23.  

The company’s operating profit increased by 16.7% to Y257bn. 

Its profit before income tax for the six months to February 2024 (H1 FY24) climbed to Y299.3bn, a 29.9% increase from the same period of the previous year, while profit attributable to the owners of the parent company rose by 27.7% to Y195.9bn.  

Fast Retailing saw its consolidated revenue rise to Y1.59trn in H1 FY24, up by 9% from Y1.46trn in the first half of the previous fiscal year. 

The overall growth was driven by strong performances from Uniqlo operations in North America, Europe and Southeast Asia, and from the GU brand.  

Uniqlo Japan saw its revenue dip by 2% to Y485.1bn during the period, while its operating profit increased by 14.7% to Y77.2bn. 

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Same-store sales for this business also contracted by 3.4% due to an insufficient product lineup for the warm winter weather and suboptimal communication of product information.  

Internationally, Uniqlo’s revenue surged by 17% to Y883.9bn, and its operating profit grew by 23% to Y150.9bn.  

The company’s GU business segment reported a 9.6% increase in revenue to Y159.5bn and a 17.5% increase in operating profit to Y15.3bn in H1 FY24.  

The Global Brands segment, which includes Theory, PLST and Comptoir des Contonniers, experienced a revenue decline of 1.2% to Y69.4bn and an operating loss of Y1.7bn during H1 FY24. 

Fast Retailing anticipates a record performance for the full year 2024, with consolidated revenue projected at Y3.03trn, a 9.5% increase from 2023.  

The company expects its consolidated operating profit to rise by 18.1% to Y450.0bn.  

Profit attributable to the owners of the parent is forecast to be Y320.0bn, an 8.0% increase from the previous year. 

Uniqlo recently evealed plans to open stores in Houston and Dallas, Texas, US as part of its North American expansion.