Copenhagen, Denmark--Pandora saw total revenue increase by 12 percent in 2017, led by a strong performance in Pandora-owned retail stores.

In fact, revenue from Pandora-owned retail increased 42 percent, with like-for-like sales growth of company-owned concept stores up by 11 percent during the year.

Revenue in the Americas region was up 4 percent for Pandora.

In the full-year, revenue in the United States grew 3 percent, driven by a network expansion including the acquisition of franchise stores as well as a strong performance by the company’s “e-store” e-commerce business in the region.

Pandora said the retail environment in the U.S. remained “challenging” throughout the year, as mall traffic continued to decrease and most brands in the affordable space were “increasingly promotional.”

Meanwhile the Europe, Africa and the Middle East market was up 13 percent and Asia Pacific was up 25 percent.

In the fourth quarter, total revenue for the company was up 15 percent compared with the year-earlier, driven once again by a strong performance from Pandora-owned retail, representing a 51 percent increase in revenue for the category.

Revenue from Pandora-owned concept stores also was up, with the company reporting a 54 percent increase compared with the prior-year period.

The quarter saw a 16 percent increase in the Americas, supported in part by the acquisition of franchise stores in the United States, Pandora said, in addition to product returns in the fourth quarter of 2016.

In January, Pandora announced that Scott Burger, who has headed the Americas market for five and a half years, will step down this month.

The company expects to name a replacement in the second quarter. In the meantime, Pandora CEO Anders Colding Friis will oversee the region.

Revenue from Europe, Africa and the Middle East was up 19 percent last quarter, while Asia Pacific rose 5 percent.

Pandora’s revenue from the wholesale channel declined 3 percent during the period, and revenue from franchise concept stores decreased 16 percent. The charm company said the latter had to do with a “too repetitive product assortment, as well as a difficult retail environment in the U.S. and the U.K.”

Pandora added net 308 concept stores during the full year, bringing its global concept store count to 2,446.

In the fourth quarter, it added net 109 company-owned concept stores, with the increase driven mainly by store openings in the U.S., China, Italy and France.

Pandora said it expects group revenue to increase in the range of 7 to 10 percent in fiscal 2018, driven by an increase in the owned and operated part of its store network as well as the launch of new product.

However it also noted revenue growth in the first quarter likely will be below that guidance range, attributed in large part to the “dependency on newness in the product assortment,” expected to improve throughout the year.

In 2018, Pandora plans to open net 200 concept stores, 25 percent of which are expected to open in the Americas, as well as another 50 percent in the Europe, Africa and the Middle East market and the remaining 25 percent in Asia Pacific.

Pandora expects two-thirds of the concept store openings to be Pandora-owned stores.

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