Ferragamo’s Norsa Sees Growth in 2015 After ‘Excellent’ February

Salvatore Ferragamo SpA rose to the highest in more than a year in Milan trading after Chief Executive Officer Michele Norsa said the Italian luxury-shoemaker had an “excellent” February and forecast growth in 2015.

Chinese are “spending money from the West Coast of the U.S. to Korea, Japan, Singapore,” while a weaker euro will be a “tailwind” this year, Norsa said Sunday at Ferragamo’s women’s fashion show in Milan. “It’s a really positive mood.”

The shares rose as much as 3.2 percent to 27.98 euros, the highest intraday price since Jan. 2, 2014.

Ferragamo joins larger competitor LVMH Moet Hennessy Louis Vuitton SA in reporting a strong start to 2015 even as anti-graft measures weigh on spending in China. All retail markets benefited from Chinese New Year, which fell on Feb. 19 this year, while a weaker euro, lower oil prices and expectations for quantitative easing added to a “very exciting” second half of February, according to Norsa.

“I still feel positive about China,” the CEO said. And although Russian demand in Europe has been hurt by trade sanctions tied to the conflict in Ukraine, consumers from the country are still traveling, Norsa said.

This year, the Italian shoemaker will probably open more than 10 outlets at airports from Dubai to Helsinki as more people travel, Norsa said. The company “may also drive digital expenses in a stronger way,” aiming to boost e-commerce and brand visibility with younger consumers, he said.

Ferragamo reports 2014 earnings on March 12. The company last month posted full-year sales that rose 6.5 percent to 1.33 billion euros ($1.5 billion), excluding currency fluctuations, which was better than analysts expected.

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