For almost a century, Samsonite has proven itself to be the worldwide leader in innovative travel solutions. Today, the journey continues.
Three years ago, Samsonite embarked upon a journey to transform itself into a leading global lifestyle travel company. To serve as our roadmap, we established three primary financial goals: increase sales, grow gross margins and generate improved cash flow. Our progress to date has been exceptional, and in fiscal 2007, we continued to pass important milestones. During the year, we unveiled a significant number of new products; dramatically expanded our retail distribution channel; made strategic investments in new global markets; completed the acquisition of a majority interest in American luxury accessories house Lambertson Truex, and launched major global advertising and public relations campaigns. We continue to define, develop, clarify and promote all of our brands, thereby strengthening our position in every market segment and building a solid platform for future growth.
It has been said that the act of making a journey is often more meaningful than the reality of reaching one's destination. Samsonite's journey over the past three years has, indeed, been both deeply meaningful and highly rewarding. During this time, we have created and developed a new brand and successfully positioned it in the luxury market; built brand equity across our complementary portfolio on a global scale; and firmly placed Samsonite on the path to becoming a globally recognized innovation, quality and style leader. We have grown and diversified our revenue stream across multiple geographic markets, distribution channels, product categories and consumer segments. And we have made great progress in improving our operating income, strengthening our balance sheet and setting the stage for greater growth.
While we are proud of our progress, we are also keenly aware that we have much more to accomplish. As a team, we are sharply focused on executing the next phase of our strategic plan with the same dedication, discipline and results that our stakeholders and customers have come to expect. In the process, we plan to reward your support by building Samsonite into one of the most highly regarded premium lifestyle brands in the world.