FINANCE

Store closing costs drag down Shoe Carnival

BY CSA STAFF

Evansville, Ind. Shoe Carnival said Thursday that it lost $3 million in its fiscal fourth-quarter, compared with a profit of $1 million in the year-ago period. The chain said its results were pulled down by higher store closing costs and increased promotions during the holidays.

Sales fell 5% to $156.9 million from $164.3 million, while same-store sales dropped 8.3%. The results missed Wall Street’s estimate of $158.9 million.

For the full fiscal year, net income tumbled 59% to $5.3 million from $12.8 million in the prior year.

Annual revenue dipped 2% to $647.6 million from $658.7 million, while same-store sales declined 4.6%.

The company finished fiscal 2008 with 304 stores, after opening 24 new ones and closing 11. It plans to open about 15 stores in fiscal 2009, with 10 targeted for the first quarter. About 10 stores are expected to close during the year.

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Limited Brands names president of La Senza

BY CSA STAFF

COLUMBUS, Ohio Limited Brands, parent company of La Senza, announced the appointment of Joanne Nemeroff as president of La Senza.

“We’re committed to our Canadian operations and international expansion. Joanne is a results-driven leader with a successful history in retail that will serve us well in our continued growth of the La Senza brand,” said Leslie Wexner, chairman of the board and CEO of Limited Brands.

Nemeroff joins La Senza from her position as group VP of Aldo where she was responsible for their Spring, Globo and Feet First brands. With more than 30 years in the business, her previous leadership and retail experience include leading Canadian retailers Reitman’s and T. Eaton, as well as global brand expansion.

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Sears unveils new tag line

BY CSA STAFF

HOFFMAN ESTATES, Ill. Sears has introduced a new tag line, “Sears. Life. Well spent,” to convey the idea that it offers its customers the products and services to help them build a better life, even in a down economy.

“Consumers today know it’s about more than low prices. Price is important, but it’s also about earning our customer’s trust – that what you buy is going to last and bring a measure of happiness to your life,” said Don Hamblen, VP, chief marketing officer, Sears. “‘Life. Well spent.’ voices that optimism that Sears has by enriching our customers’ lives. We’re constantly examining every level of our brand experience so that our customers will not only find what they want at prices they expect, but also with the confidence in knowing it doesn’t stop there.”

In addition to the new tag line, Sears is unveiling a seasonal campaign to run in conjunction with its popular and successful Blue Appliance Crew work. This new campaign for Sears’ soft lines appeals to the notion that conspicuous consumption is out of sync with today’s world. Sears is tapping into the belief that fashion doesn’t have to come at the expense of living well.

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