Chico’s 3Q Profit Falls 44%, Cuts Back Expansion
Fort Myers, Fla. Chico’s FAS Inc. on Tuesday reported a 44% drop in quarterly net profit on Tuesday and forecast weaker-than-expected results in the current quarter due to slumping sales.
Net profit in the third quarter, ended Nov.3, was $23.6 million compared with $42.1 million a year earlier. Net sales for the quarter rose 3.4% to $416 million, while same-store sales dropped 9.3%.
“We are greatly disappointed with our performance to date,” said Scott A. Edmonds, chairman, president and CEO, in a statement. “Numerous challenges continue to affect the entire retail sector. It now appears that based on our November sales performance, our fourth-quarter earnings could approach the break-even level.”
Edmonds said the chain intends to end the season with clean inventory levels, and that it is aggressively moving to control many other expenditures, including capital expenditures, both present and for 2008.
“To that end, we are taking a more conservative approach to our fiscal 2008 growth and expansion plans than previously announced by reducing our square footage growth rate from 12%-15% to approximately 10%, which will reduce the number of stores we plan to open to approximately 60-65 net new stores,” Edmonds stated. “Expansions and relocations should come in at the low end of previous guidance, and we will continue to evaluate our 2009 growth and expansion plans as well.”
Office Depot updates ‘green’ catalogue
DELRAY BEACH, Fla. Office Depot announced today that is launching the fourth edition of its fourth Green Book, a catalog of nearly 3,000 products featuring a wide range of environmental attributes.
According to the company, the new Green Book features more than 2,200 recycled or remanufactured products and 600 items with environmental benefits other than recycled, such as reduced energy, non-toxic, refillable and rechargeable, as well as other products and tips for an environmentally-conscious business.
“Year-over-year we are seeing a significant increase in the number of customers wanting to ‘green’ their purchasing practices,” said Steve Schmidt, president of Office Depot’s North American Business Solutions division. “Office Depot’s Green Book provides these businesses with a unique solution, complete with product recommendations and consultative guidance, to achieve their goals.”
Sears chairman fires back at investors
HOFFMAN ESTATES, Ill. Sears Holdings chairman Eddie Lampert fired back at investors and analysts last week for their disregard of the retailer’s progression.
Lampert defended the company in a letter to employees on Friday, one day after Sears posted a 99% drop in earnings and a 3% slide in revenues for the third quarter.
“We are one of the few retail companies that have actually reduced our overall debt levels while at the same time investing over $1 billion on capital expenditures, making investments in inventory for our customers, contributing significantly to our pension plans for our past and future retirees, and repurchasing over $3 billion of our shares,” Lampert wrote in the letter, filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
Sears Holdings is the fourth largest retailer in the United States.