November 11, 2014 / 5:06 PM / 5 years ago

Moncler 9-month core profit above forecasts, sales growth ease

MILAN, Nov 11 (Reuters) - Italian luxury outerwear maker Moncler posted on Tuesday nine-month core profit slightly ahead of expectations despite a slowdown in sales growth compared to the first half.

Adjusted earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) were at 136.1 million euros at the end of September, up 19 percent from a year earlier, compared to analyst expectations of a 132 million euro core profit.

Moncler said sales in January-September totalled 449.3 million euros, up 16 percent from a year earlier and broadly in line with a Thomson Reuters SmartEstimate of 447.3 million euros ($555 million).

Before accounting for currency moves, sales were up 18 percent against a 22 percent rise in the first six months.

Prospects for the luxury sector have worsened lately hurt by worries about the possible spread of the Ebola virus and pro-democracy protests in Hong Kong which hit shopping compounding a trend of slowing consumer spending in the key Chinese market.

Moncler, which is rapidly expanding its retail network, said same-store sales rose 7 percent in the nine months to September compared to a 10 percent increase in January-June.

Moncler said on Tuesday it had signed a preliminary accord to create a joint-venture with its Korean business partner Shinsegae International to boost its retail channel in the country. (1 US dollar = 0.8053 euro) (Reporting by Valentina Za)

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