Paris — French fashion group Chanel released full-year earnings for the first time on Thursday, laying down a marker as one of the luxury world’s biggest labels by sales after both revenue and profit grew strongly in 2017. The privately owned company, famed for its tweed suits, cushioned handbags and No5 perfumes, has long kept a close lid on its numbers. It also has a maverick streak, being one of the only brands to shun online sales of its clothes. The move to publish was "absolutely not" a precursor to a stock market listing, chief financial officer Philippe Blondiaux said. He also ruled out a sale. "It’s exactly the opposite — this financial statement shows that we are amazingly solid financially and we can keep our status as a private, independent company for the next few centuries," Blondiaux said. "Instead of having others report, we’ve decided to put the facts on the table about who we are," he added, saying the brand, which has long leaned on octogenarian designer Karl Lage...

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