FINANCE

Vitamin Shoppe Q4 profit up 3%, hurt by Superstorm Hurricane

BY Marianne Wilson

North Bergen, N.J. — Vitamin Shoppe Inc. said Tuesday its fourth-quarter net income rose 3% to $9.7 million, up from $9.4 million in the year-ago period.

Revenue rose 2% in the quarter ended Dec. 29, to $218.9 million from $214.9 million. Same-store sales rose 5.2%. Online sales grew 13%. The company said that its sales growth was partially offset by the impact of Superstorm Sandy, which negatively impacted comparable sales by 1.6%. Also, when compared with the same period in the prior year, the chain’s fourth quarter had one less selling week.

Vitamin Shoppe opened 15 stores during the quarter, including its first two in Canada, bringing its store count to 579.

Vitamin Shoppe plans to open about 50 new stores this year, compared with 54 in 2012.

For the full year, profit rose 35% to $60.8 million. Revenue increased 11% to $950.9 million.

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OPERATIONS

Abercrombie & Fitch names EVP stores

BY Staff Writer

New Albany, Ohio — Abercrombie & Fitch Co. announced the promotion of Amy Zehrer to the position of EVP stores, from SVP, effective immediately.

Zehrer has been with Abercrombie & Fitch since 1992; she joined as a manager-in-training at the brand’s Rosedale Mall location in Roseville, Minn. Over the last 21 years, Zehrer has proven herself as a definitive leader, evolving the Abercrombie & Fitch brand and playing an integral part in the success of its international expansion, the company said.

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FINANCE

Macy’s profit beats Street; forecast tops views

BY Marianne Wilson

Cincinnati — Macy’s earned a better-than-expected $730 million in the fourth quarter, compared with $745 million a year earlier when it booked one-time gains from the sale of store leases. The department store retailer forecast an annual profit for the recently completed year that surpassed analysts’ estimates and provided new guidance for continued growth and progress for 2013.

“Going into 2013, our team is moving ahead with new plans and actions to sharpen our approach to localized merchandise assortments and marketing, which we continue to believe is Macy’s sustainable competitive advantage,” said Macy’s chairman, president and CEO Terry Lundgren. “We are accelerating progress in omni-channel strategies at Macy’s and Bloomingdale’s to bring together our efforts in stores, online and mobile in a manner that satisfies emerging shopping patterns and capitalizes on the strength of our inventory regardless of where the customer demand occurs.”

Sales in the quarter ended February 2, 2013, rose 7.2% to $9.35 billion from $8.72 billion. Same- store sales rose 3.9%, helped by a 48% surge in online sales.

For the full year, Macy’s sales totaled $27.686 billion, up 4.9% from the previous year. 2011. On a same-store basis, sales were up 3.7%, better than the chain’s initial guidance.

Online sales (macys.com and bloomingdales.com combined) were up 47.7% in the fourth quarter and 41% for the year. Online sales are included in the same-store sales calculation for Macy’s.

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