FINANCE

Ascena profit drops in Q2; to open net 60 stores

BY Katherine Boccaccio

Suffern, N.Y. — Ascena Retail Group reported Monday that adjusted net income for the quarter ended Jan. 26 dropped to $42.9 million, compared with $63.7 million in the year-ago period, due in large part to expenses associated with the company’s acquisition of Charming Shoppes.

Sales soared 44% to $1.2 billion from $862 million, driven by the added Lane Bryant and Catherine’s banners. Same-store sales dipped 1%.

“We continue to be excited by the growth and efficiency opportunities created by the integration of our acquisition and strategies to fully leverage our portfolio,” said David Jaffe, president and CEO, Ascena Retail Group.

The company is expected to open 100 to 120 stores in the spring, and close 40 to 60.

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E.Ka says:
Mar-18-2013 02:18 am

Their net incomes declined as
Their net incomes declined as it was said. It is so sad. It is kind of a big loss. But there are many ways to cover the loss. - Aldo Todini

E.Ka says:
Mar-18-2013 02:18 am

Their net incomes declined as it was said. It is so sad. It is kind of a big loss. But there are many ways to cover the loss. - Aldo Todini

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FINANCE

Report: Affluent shoppers increasingly optimistic about economy

BY Katherine Boccaccio

New York — A report released Monday by Ipsos found that affluent optimism in the U.S. economy rose significantly in February.

According to Ipsos MediaCT’s February 2013 Mendelsohn Affluent Barometer – which defines affluent as at least $100,000 in annual household income – in February, 43% of Affluents were optimistic about the U.S. economy, up from 40% in December 2012, and 34% in October 2012. In contrast, only 36% described themselves as pessimistic in February 2013. In addition, 52% now believe they personally will be better off in 12 months, up from 41% in December 2012.

“Affluent optimism has risen in 2013, buoyed by the performance of stock and housing markets, as well as perceived improvements in the economy as a whole, and the job market in particular,” said Dr. Stephen Kraus, SVP and chief insights officer, Ipsos.

The Barometer found that luxury spending among Affluents will likely remain at current levels, but shows significant growth potential among Ultra Affluents, the 2%-4% of Americans with at least $250K+ household income. Ultra Affluent spending on luxury shows particularly strong growth potential in categories related to travel, apparel, accessories, watches and jewelry.

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STORE SPACES

Walmart ups solar in Ohio

BY Katherine Boccaccio

Columbus, Ohio — Wal-Mart Stores Inc. said Monday it has worked with SolarCity to install solar panels on 12 Walmart stores and Sam’s Clubs throughout Ohio.

The solar panel installations will add approximately 6,000,000 kWh of generation production – enough energy to power more than 820 homes – and are expected to supply approximately 5%-20% of each store’s overall electricity use.

"We are committed to increasing the use of renewable energy resources, including solar panels, at our stores in Ohio and throughout the country," said David Ozment, Walmart senior director of energy.

The Walmart stores and Sam’s Clubs receiving solar power systems are located in Mason, Xenia, Greenville, Austintown, Middletown, Franklin, Youngstown, Toledo, Milford, Loveland, and two systems in Cincinnati.

Walmart has an aspirational goal is to be powered 100% by renewable energy.

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