Marcolin closed the first quarter with a 6.5 percent drop in sales to €52.3 million. The weaker top line outside Italy affected operating profits, which were also hit by the company's decision to apply a more aggressive commercial policy in terms of discounts and to continue investing.

At constant currency rates, the revenue decline reached 8.5 percent. Marcolin noted that revenues booked in the first three months of 2008 still included Cébé's sports helmets and goggles, an activity that has been discontinued. On an adjusted basis, the group's sales dipped by 3.8 percent.

Sales in Italy rose by 8.3 percent to €11.2 million. The turnover dropped in the rest of Europe by 14.7 percent to €21.0 million, fell in the U.S. by 0.9 percent to €10.7 million and shrank in the rest of the world by 8.0 percent to €9.5 million.

Operating income before amortization (Ebitda) was down to €6.9 million from €10.8 million and regular operating profit (Ebit) fell to €5.5 million from €8.6 million. Net profit was €4.2 million compared with €4.8 million.

The company said that despite the ongoing uncertainty in the marketplace it is confident it will close the full year with a net profit thanks to its existing and forthcoming collections. Marcolin noted that it started the shipment of Dsquared2 products in March and that the first deliveries of the Tod's and Hogan collections will be carried out in the fourth quarter.