Corporate news / 11.06.2012
|ECCO's Chief Operating Officer Michael Hauge Sørensen (left) and Danish Ambassador
to China Friis Arne Petersen.
ECCO received the Diploma of the Danish Export Association and HRH Prince Henrik's Medal of Honour in conjunction with the Danish National Day celebrations at the Danish Embassy in Beijing.
"The Danish Government and I are delighted to be able to present this award to ECCO. Half of all the world's shoes are produced in China, which means it's certainly no mean feat for ECCO to have made such a mark on the Chinese market and shoe industry," said Friis Arne Pedersen June 2.
In less than 10 years ECCO has grown from a single store into a retail chain of 625 stores in 180 towns and cities throughout China. These days ECCO considers China to be one of its home markets, since ECCO now also has an important production facility for leather and shoes based in Xiamen. At the time of writing every fifth ECCO employee – which is over 4,000 people – works in China. In addition to these people, almost 2,500 workers are employed in the store network of ECCO's partners and distributors.
"The Chinese market has seen dramatically strong growth since 2006 and now represents nearly 10% of our total revenue. Our best estimate indicates that ECCO's sales in China will soon pass the one billion Danish kroner mark," said Michael Hauge Sørensen, ECCO's Chief Operating Officer.
Thanks to a strong Chinese network and a major investment programme over the years in branding and marketing, ECCO is today seen as a leading Danish fashion brand in China.
"Even with the steep economic growth in China tapering off, ECCO will continue to see strong growth in the next few years. We expect China to soon overtake the USA as our largest single market," added Michael Hauge Sørensen.
ECCO is currently the only major shoe manufacturer in the world to own and run all stages of production from leather to shoe. With 20,000 employees in 90 countries, in recent years ECCO has experienced considerable growth, something which is also reflected in solid financial results. In 2011, revenue increased by 16% to DKK 7.1 billion with pre-tax profits of DKK 904 million.