Hennes & Mauritz SL, the Spanish subsidiary of the Swedish textile giant H&M, multiplied its net profit by 10 during the last full year before the coronavirus crisis broke out, and what an impact it has had on this sector. According to the accounts deposited in the Mercantile Registry, the company achieved a net profit of 12 million euros, for the slightly more than 1.2 that it registered in 2018. The operating result also improved considerably, from 10.2 million to 18.3, benefited on the one hand by the increase in sales registered and by the lower costs incurred in the external services item, mainly in the rents of the premises of its stores in which almost four million were saved.

Regarding revenues, these grew very slightly (0.3%), to 666.1 million. Despite the minuscule improvement, this figure allows H&M to break with two consecutive years of decline, although it is still far from its ceiling registered in 2016 with 718 million. As of November 30 of last year, when it closed its fiscal year, H&M had 167 stores in Spain, five fewer after opening four and closing nine during the year.

On the other hand, its financial statements reflect the definitive closure of the agreements reached between the Spanish and Swedish tax agencies on a double taxation dispute in the payment of H&M taxes that dates back to 2014. As the company says, the definitive liquidation, of which it claims to be satisfied, entails the payment by the textile company of 7.7 million euros to the Spanish Tax Agency, an amount that it proceeded to provision in its financial statements. This amount is somewhat higher than the 6 million that the 2018 accounts reflected as a principle of agreement in the conflict.

H & M’s financial report also reflects how the company amortized the 100 million loan that BBVA granted it in 2018 during the year, most of which it allocated to pay a dividend of 70 million to its Swedish parent. The other 30 million were used to repay a loan he had with a group company. That 100 million loan was due in January of this year.

H&M ended the 2019 financial year in Spain with a workforce of 5,976 people, 87 less. The firm does not make forecasts about the impact of Covid-19 in its reports. Between March and May, its stores were closed due to strict confinement, and it kept its entire store staff at ERTE during those weeks.

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