(Add detail, 2017 forecast)
March 2 Italian shoemaker Geox is
confident of achieving a significant jump in core profit this
year, it said on Thursday after posting a 23 percent decline for
Geox reported full-year earnings before interest, tax,
depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) had fallen to 47.6
million euros ($50 million), citing higher cost of sales on
higher product costs, due in part to increased promotions and
the strengh of the U.S. dollar against the euro.
However, the company said that it expects to achieve 2017
EBITDA in line with a company-provided consensus of analyst
forecasts of 76 million euros.
The maker of breathable yet waterproof footwear said it
plans to continue expanding its wholesale channel, which
achieved 5.4 percent growth last year, and its retail network in
fast-growing markets such as Eastern Europe, Russia and China.
Sales last year rose 3 percent to 900.8 million euros, below
the average growth target of 6.5 percent in its 2016-18 plan.
Margins, meanwhile, dropped to 5.3 percent from 7.1 percent,
losing ground on its 2018 target of 10-11 percent.
The company proposed a dividend of 0.02 euros per share,
down from 0.06 euros the previous year.
(Reporting by Silvia Recchimuzzi in Gdynia; Editing by Mark
Potter and David Goodman)