Managing Director Karl-Johan Persson’s Speech
H&M Annual General Meeting 2012
May 3, 2012
Expansion Is Our Key To Success
I am so pleased to see many of you today and thank you for coming. I am here not only to talk about last year, but also to share with you our future plans. Here at H&M we aim to put our customers first always operate with a long-term perspective. In 2012, we further strengthened our customer offering and we have put our resources in to activities could build an even more powerful and lucrative H&M in the decades to come.
Our goal is to strive for the best in the combination of quality, fashion, and price. With the first H&M store opening in 1947, we continue to exceed in customer satisfaction, beyond customer’s expectations in creating new collections with featured designers such as, Versace for H&M, David Beckham Bodywear, and Italian label Marini. Creating these collaborations with well-known designers generates excitement for the consumers. Due to the environmental concerns, H&M created the Conscious Collections with organic cotton and environmentally friendly materials. H&M has become known as one of the top organic users in the retail industry.
With H&M’s sales increase by 13 percent from last year, we hope to continue to expand throughout the year with 275 stores worldwide. The expansion will take place in France, UK, Germany, China, US, Italy, Finland, Hong Kong, Poland, Australia and considerably more. H&M is even opening in 5 new countries, Bulgaria being one with two stores that opened up in March. The lines were packed outside of the stores, with eager customers thrilled to see the new store revealed. Another expansion H&M is working towards is the online market. H&M Shop Online opened this year in the US, and the utmost, frequently visited site within fashion.
Looking ahead, we want to continue to strengthen H&M’s position in the 44 markets as of today. Our business model is one of a kind, not only being able to expand in large cities, but in small towns which can be a challenge for many companies. We are all excited to launch new inspirational collection in stores around the world in 2012, and looking forward to a year filled with upcoming opportunities.
There may be challenges as market indicators suggest, but we are very confident that we as a company, will be able to maintain our strong position. Thank you for listening and I am now turning you over to our chairman of the meeting.