Wet Seal hires financial advisors; adopts poison pill
Foothill Ranch, Calif. — The Wet Seal said it has hired financial advisors and adopted a poison pill that discourages an investor from acquiring 10% of the company.
The move comes as Clinton Group, an investor with a 3.9% stake in the chain, has been putting pressure on the company to put itself on the block.
“We took this action to ensure the board has sufficient time to consider any option,” said Wet Seal chairman Harold Kahn.
The retailer said it has hired Guggenheim Securities LLC and Peter J. Solomon Co. to pursue strategic options to increase shareholder value.
In July, Wet Seal fired its CEO, Susan McGalla, amid declining sales. The chain reported a net loss of $12.4 million for the quarter ended July 28, compared with net income of $2.2 million a year earlier. Second-quarter same-store sales fell 11%.
AEO raises outlook on record sales growth
PITTSBURGH — American Eagle Outfitters’ income from continuing operations increased 62% to 21 cents per diluted share for the second quarter, compared with 13 cents per diluted share for the comparable quarter last year. Net income for the second quarter, which includes a loss from discontinued operations, was 9 cents per diluted share, compared with 10 cents per diluted share last year.
Robert Hanson, chief executive officer stated, “While pleased with our results, and therefore raising our annual outlook, we continue to drive for long-term performance improvement through fortifying our brands, further strengthening our products, marketing and customer experience, enhancing operational disciplines and pursuing growth across North America."
The company reported that net sales increased 11% to a record $740 million, compared with $669 million last year. Comparable-store sales, including AE Direct, increased 9%, compared to a 1% increase last year.
For the third quarter, the company expects EPS from continuing operations to be in the range of 37 cents to 38 cents per diluted share, compared with 30 cents last year.
For the year, the company is raising its EPS guidance from continuing operations to a range of $1.33 to $1.36, compared to an adjusted 97 cents last year. EPS guidance is based on comparable store sales growth of mid single-digits for the third quarter and low single-digits for the fourth quarter.
Mattel Apptivity marries old-school toys with new technology
EL SEGUNDO, Calif. — Mattel’s highly-anticipated Apptivity line, which the company introduced at the 2012 Toy Fair in February, is now available for the iPad.
At the ToyFair, representatives for Mattel demonstrated how Apptivity allows kids to take a physical toy, such as a Hot Wheels car and play with it on the screen of an iPad. Other brands now available through the Apptivity line include Fisher-Price, Monster High and WWE.
“With millions of households now owning iPads, we sought out a meaningful way to create new play possibilities that both entertain and bring families together,” said Lisa McKnight, SVP marketing Mattel North America division. “Apptivity meets the needs of today’s tech-savvy kids, while showcasing our trusted brands and best-in-class partners.”
Apptivity single packs retail for $9.99 and starter set two packs with included accessories for $19.99.