The demand for luxury goods has not been affected by economic downturn, if the latest

financial figures from French luxury group PPR are anything to go by. The company saw profits soar by 24% in 2010, seeing revenue up 7.5% to €14.6 billion. In plain terms, this translates into double digit margins and strong sales of its fashion and jewellery brands at a time when many consumers can't afford to shop.

The group, which owns brands including Gucci, Stella McCartney, Alexander McQueen and Balenciaga, said recurring net income was up 56%.

François-Henri Pinault, Chairman and CEO, noted: "The operating and financial performance of the Group as a whole and of each of its businesses was outstanding in 2010. Cost-control efforts launched during the height of the economic crisis and the sales offensive implemented successfully in 2010 to drive profitable revenue growth enabled the Group to take full advantage of the upturn. The excellent results in 2010 are a testimony to the commitment of our teams, the creativity of our brands and the momentum of our retail businesses. They also confirm the pertinence of our strategy of focusing on higher-margin activities, which allows us to consistently and structurally raise our performance levels. I am confident that, thanks to the solidity of its business model and its proven ability to adapt, PPR will continue to achieve robust revenue growth in 2011 and deliver a better financial performance than in 2010."