Uniqlo operator posts record annual profit despite China slump

Reuters file photo
Customers line up outside store of the Uniqlo fast fashion retailer to attend its opening in the Sanlitun shopping district on a polluted day in Beijing in November 2021.

TOKYO (Reuters) — Japan’s Fast Retailing Co 9983.T, owner of clothing and Uniqlo, reported record full-year profit on Thursday despite a continuing slump in China, its biggest overseas market.

Operating profit was 297.3 billion yen ($2.02 billion) in the 12 months through August compared with 249 billion yen a year earlier. That surpassed the company’s guidance and the consensus forecast of 291 billion yen, according to the average of 12 analyst estimates from Refinitiv.

The company’s previous operating profit record was 263 billion yen in the year ended in August 2019.

International operations drove growth, with the North America segme