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Spain's Inditex/Zara reports surging 9-month profit amid online expansion

MADRID -- The world's biggest clothing group, Spain's Inditex which controls the Zara brand, reported Wednesday a surge in profit in the first three quarters as it expanded globally and launched Internet sales in mainland China.

Inditex said net profit leapt 27 percent from a year earlier to 1.655 billion euros (US$2.2 billion) in the nine months to Oct. 31.

Sales climbed 25 percent to 11.36 billion euros, said the group, founded 40 years ago in Arteixo, Galicia, by billionaire Amancio Ortega, the son of a railwayman.

Inditex opened 360 new stores in 54 markets in the period, notably under its brands of Zara, Massimo Dutti, Bershka and Pull and Bear, to bring the total to 5,887 stores in 86 countries.

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