PARIS: Hermes, the French maker of luxury fashionwear, said Friday that profits rose sharply in the first six months, driven by strong sales in all geographic regions.

Hermes said in a statement that net profit advanced by 40 percent to 1.64 billion euros ($1.7 billion) in the period from January to June.

Revenues were up 29 percent at 5.475 billion euros and the group's operating margin - a key profitability yardstick - reached a record high of 42.1 percent.

"The very dynamic results over the first six months of the year testify to the growth across our 16 business lines and the strong desirability of our objects," said chief executive Axel Dumas.

"In a still unstable context, we are moving forward with confidence."

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Hermes said that all the geographical areas posted strong growth in the first half, with its operations in Asia showing particularly resilience, despite the sanitary context in China.

Looking ahead, the group said that "the impacts of the health context are still difficult to assess."

In the medium-term, "despite the economic, geopolitical and monetary uncertainties around the world, we confirm an ambitious goal for revenue growth at constant exchange rates," Hermes said.


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