Higher sales, including mid-single digit comparable -sales growth, helped drive Ann Inc.’s third quarter results.
The company posted third-quarter earnings of $41.2 million, compared to $40.7 million in the year-earlier quarter. Net sales grew 7% to $657.3 million from $612.5 million. Total same-store sales increased 3.7%. By brand, same-store sales inched up 0.6% at Ann Taylor and 5.6% at Loft. However, sales fell 6.9% in the Ann Taylor Factory channel.
"Ann Inc. delivered outstanding performance this quarter,” said Kay Krill, president and CEO. “Despite a challenging and highly promotional retail environment, we achieved a double-digit increase in earnings per share, excluding the effect of a one-time $0.08 benefit in the third quarter of last year. Our bottom-line growth reflected higher sales, including mid-single digit comparable sales growth, a solid gross margin rate, continued disciplined management of expenses, as well as the benefit of share repurchase activity.”
For the fiscal fourth quarter of 2013, Ann Inc. expects total net sales to be $640 million, reflecting a total company same-store sales increase in the mid-single digits. Ann Inc. expects fiscal 2013 total net sales to be $2.51 billion, reflecting a total company same-store sales increase in the low-to-mid-single digits.
The total store count at the end of the fiscal third quarter was 1,027, comprised of 276 Ann Taylor stores, 106 Ann Taylor Factory stores, 537 Loft stores, and 108 Loft Outlet stores.