Kohl’s profit up 6%; raises full-year outlook

Menomonee Falls, Wis. -- Kohl’s Corp. said Thursday its first-quarter earnings rose 6%, helped by online sales and Easter demand in the Southeast.

Net income rose to $211 million from $199 million in the year-ago period. Sales in the quarter ended April 30 rose 3.1% to $4.16 billion. Same-store sales were up 1.3%.

“We have strengthened our marketing for the second quarter and believe that we will see pent-up demand for seasonal businesses, which would allow us to achieve a better [same-store sales result] and even stronger financial results in the second quarter,” said CEO Kevin Mansell.

He added that the company’s online sales are on track to reach $1 billion this year and it is opening a third fulfillment center to help support the holiday 2011 peak season. The center, in Edgewood, Md., should open in July,

During the quarter, Kohl’s opened nine stores, giving it a total of 1,097 stores in 49 states. The retailer expects to open an additional 31 stores and remodel an additional 70 stores later this year.

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