US: Retailers' March 2012 sales roundup
The following is a general roundup of US apparel and shoe retailers' March 2012 sales results.
Action sportswear and footwear retailer Zumiez Inc posted a 23.5% rise in its total sales in March, climbing to $50.9m from $41.2m in the same month last year. Same-store sales were up 14.1% according to the company, which operates 439 stores.
Denim specialist The Buckle Inc posted an 8.9% lift in its net sales in the five weeks to 31 March, up to $105.5m from $96.9m a year earlier. Same-store sales at stores open at least one year surged 10%. The retailer operates 431 stores.
According to teen clothier The Wet Seal Inc, its revenues were "in line with expectations" in March, although total sales slipped 5.1% to $58.6m. Same-store sales were also down, dropping 7.8%, with a decline of 7.6% at the Wet Seal stores and a fall of 8.6% at Arden B. The company said it "performed well" in bottoms and fashion dresses at its Arden B stores, but that it "remains cautious about near term sales" at Wet Seal.
Limited Brands Inc, operator of the Victoria's Secret and La Senza chains, said its March net sales edged down 2.6% to $840.9m from $863.0m a year ago. The company said last year's revenues included a contribution of $84.3m from its Mast third party apparel sourcing business, which was sold in November 2011. Comparable store sales were up 8% in the month.
Specialty clothing retailer Gap Inc reported a "solid" 10% rise in net sales for the five weeks to 31 March at $1.46bn, compared with $1.33bn a year earlier. Comparable sales, which include online revenues, were up 8%, with gains in its North American units of 9% at Gap, 5% at Banana Republic and 11% at Old Navy. International comparable sales were up 2%.
At value-priced fashion retailer The Cato Corporation, which operates the Cato, Versona and It's Fashion divisions, sales climbed 7% to $103.9m from $97.4m a year earlier. Same-store sales increased 5%. The results were helped by an earlier Easter and warm weather.
Total sales at regional department store operator Stage Stores Inc increased 7.5% to $144m, up from $134m a year earlier. Comparable store sales increased 4.7%. Growth was seen in the children's, dresses, footwear, junior's, misses sportswear and petites categories during March. The company operates 823 stores under the Bealls, Goody's, Palais Royal, Peebles and Stage names.
Total March sales at Stein Mart Inc edged up 0.4% to $127.5m from $127.0m, while same-store sales slipped 0.3%. Ladies' boutique, dresses, linens, men's furnishings and petites posted the strongest comparable sales, while ladies' plus size sportswear, intimate apparel and ladies' casual sportswear saw weaker results.
Over at Nordstrom Inc there was a 14.7% jump in total retail sales to $1.03bn, up from $897m a year ago. Same-store sales were up 8.6, the company said.
Another double-digit rise was seen at off-price retailer Ross Stores Inc, which continues to benefit from favourable weather throughout most of its markets as well as consumers' ongoing focus on value. Total revenues increased 15% to $955m, up from $828m a year ago, and comparable store sales grew 10%.
Growth also continued at Macy's Inc, where total sales rose 6.9% to $2.34bn, compared with $2.2bn the year before. On a same-store basis, sales were up 7.3%. The retailer, which operates around 840 department stores, said March sales "exceeded our expectations beyond the benefits we anticipated from an earlier Easter."
Retailer The Bon-Ton Stores Inc, however, saw its total sales slip 0.1% to $254.1m from $254.5m, and same-store sales fell 0.1%. The company said best performing businesses were better missy sportswear, ladies' shoes, children's and cosmetics, while juniors, moderate traditional sportswear in missy, petites and large size were below par.
At department store operator Kohl's Corporation, March sales rose 5.3% to $1.8bn from $1.7bn last time, and comparable store sales edged up 3.6%. The company said warmer weather and an earlier Easter combined to help improve its sales, and that children's apparel was the strongest business, while men's and women's apparel also performed well.
Saks Incorporated, which operates the Saks Fifth Avenue and Saks Off 5th stores, reported a 6.3% rise in sales to $276.5m from $260.2m last time. Comparable store sales also increased 6.3% in the month. The strongest categories included women's contemporary apparel and men's accessories, shoes, tailored clothing and contemporary apparel.
At off-price retailer The TJX Companies Inc, March sales climbed to $2.3bn, up 14% over last year's $2.0bn. Consolidated comparable store sales increased by a "well-above-plan" 10%, with "strong increases in all of our businesses in the US, Canada and Europe."
Target Corporation, meanwhile, said its net retail sales for the five weeks to 31 March rose 7.9% to $6.43bn from $5.96bn a year ago, and comparable-store sales increased 7.3%. It said sales were "well above expectations, reflecting a healthy underlying trend combined with the benefit of an earlier Easter and favourable weather this year."
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