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Guess Q4 profit up 19%

BY CSA STAFF

Los Angeles — Guess said Wednesday that its fourth-quarter net income rose 19% on a boost in sales in Europe, Asia and North America.

Guess said it earned $103.3 million, compared with profit of $86.6 million, or 93 cents per share, during the same period a year prior.

Revenue rose 18% to $756.9 million from $642 million. The results beat the expectations of analysts.

Guess said its revenue in Asia rose 23% to $55.4 million and revenue in Europe rose 32.5% to $294.9 million. Revenue in the company’s retail stores in North America rose 9.4% to $338.6 million.

“Our focus on international expansion continues to pay off, with Europe and Asia contributing nearly two-thirds of our annual revenue increase,” stated Paul Marciano, CEO, Guess. “We leveraged the tremendous global momentum of the Guess brand, opening 237 new stores during the year. And we strengthened our infrastructure to support our future growth around the world."

Guess owned and operated 481 retail stores in the United States and Canada at the end of the fourth quarter, compared with 432 stores a year earlier.

Meanwhile, for the full year, the company earned $289.5 million, compared with $242.8 million in 2009. Revenue rose to $2.45 billion from $2.13 billion.

In other news, the company announced a $250 million share repurchase program. The buybacks, which Guess said it will make from time to time and as market and business conditions warrant, includes $85 million remaining in an earlier repurchase program.

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Report: Food prices in biggest jump since 1974

BY CSA STAFF

New York City — The Labor Department’s Producer Price Index rose last month, primarily due to higher energy costs and the biggest rise in food prices in 36 years, USA Today reported.

Food prices rose 3.9% last month, the highest increase since November 1974.

The steep rise was due, in large part, to higher vegetable costs, which were up nearly 50%.

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Woman behind Dora licensing named to industry Hall of Fame

BY CSA STAFF

NEW YORK – Leigh Anne Brodsky, president Nickelodeon Consumer Products has been selected for induction into the International Licensing Industry Merchandisers’ Association (LIMA) Licensing Industry Hall of Fame. Brodsky joins a select list of only 36 inductees—including Charles Schulz and Jim Davis, both of whom she worked with earlier in her career—since LIMA began recognizing these giants in 1985.

The induction ceremony will take place on June 14 at the annual LIMA Opening Night Awards Ceremony at Licensing International Expo 2011, which will be held at the Mandalay Bay Convention Center in Las Vegas.

Brodsky is the woman behind one of the biggest licensing properties — Dora the Explorer. In 2010, Dora celebrated its 10th anniversary and remains one of the top preschool shows on television.In 2003, Brodsky was named entertainment marketer of the year by Advertising Age.

“Leigh Anne Brodsky represents the best of our industry with her passion for bringing people of all ages together through characters and products that entertain, enlighten, and become part of our shared cultural experience,” said Charles Riotto, president of LIMA. “Her dedication and commitment to our industry and her service to our organization is exemplary and she has tirelessly led our charitable efforts. For all of her accomplishments, we are proud to honor Leigh Anne by inducting her into the Licensing Industry Hall of Fame.”

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