Bon Ton’s Q1 loss widens
York, Pa. — Bon-Ton Stores said Thursday that its first-quarter loss grew as it booked hefty debt-related charges and sales declined almost 2%. Management blamed unseasonably cold and wet weather for weak sales of seasonal apparel, which forced the retailer to take markdowns and other adjustments.
The company reported a loss of $36 million for the three months ended April 30, compared with a loss of $23.5 million in the same period last year.
The results included a charge of 53 cents a share related to an early loan payoff and refinancing of a revolving credit line.
Net sales for the quarter fell to $649.9 million, from $661.4 million a year earlier. Same-sales slipped 1.2%.
Despite the results, Bon-Ton president and CEO Bud Bergren said the company is pleased with its recent sales performance, now that the weather has become more seasonable.
"Looking ahead, we are comfortable with our current inventory levels and believe the merchandise initiatives we have in place will generate improved performance as we enter the summer season and our apparel assortments change going into fall," Bergren said. "We believe we are well positioned to achieve profitable long-term sales growth."
Hibbett net income soars in Q1
BIRMINGHAM, Ala. — A few days after Dick’s Sporting Goods reported higher-than-expected earnings, Hibbett Sports posted even more impressive sales and income growth. Hibbett Sports reported that net sales for the first quarterincreased 10.4% to $203.7 million compared with $184.5 million for the same period last year. Comparable-store sales increased 6.8%.
Net income for the quarter increased 23.1% to $21.3 million compared with $17.3 million for the same period last year. Earnings per diluted share increased 29.2% to 76 cents compared with 59 cents for the same period last year
Jeff Rosenthal, president and CEO, stated, "This marks our sixth consecutive quarter of comparable-store sales increases and our seventh consecutive quarter of earnings increases. We are pleased with the strong comparable-store sales gains, which were led by activewear and footwear and feel good about the strong start to the second quarter as well as our expectations for fiscal 2012 based on our merchandising strategies, solid inventory position and new store sales productivity.”
For the first quarter, Hibbett opened 8 new stores, expanded 4 high performing stores and closed 7 underperforming stores bringing the store base to 799 in 26 states as of April 30. For fiscal 2012, the company expects to open approximately 50 to 55 new stores, close 10 to 15 stores and expand 15 high performing stores.
The company increased its earnings guidance for fiscal 2012 to a range of $1.80 to $1.95 per diluted share and an increase in comparable-store sales in the low to mid single-digit range.
Kirkland’s income falls on higher expenses
Nashville, Tenn. — Kirkland’s said Friday that its first-quarter net income fell 51% stung by higher expenses, increasing freight costs and competition over price. Its results, however, exceeded Wall Street’s expectations.
The company earned $3.2 million for the period ended April 30, down from $6.5 million, a year earlier.
Total operating expenses rose to $29.7 million from $26.7 million.
Revenue climbed to $94.4 million from $93.5 million. Same-store sales fell 8.4%. Cost of sales climbed to $56.3 million, from $52.8 million.