• Q4 net profit US$4.9m, versus loss of $11.2m
  • Net sales up 10% to $173m
  • FY net loss narrowly cut

American Apparel returned to profitability in the last three months of 2012, growing fourth quarter sales by double digits in the process.

Comparable store sales rose 11% and wholesale revenues increased 19% in the quarter, the US company added.

Gross margin improvements were caused by a shift to higher-margin online sales, reductions in manufacturing costs and an improvement in retail gross margin.

“We are pleased with our fourth quarter results that again show solid growth and continuing momentum in all business segments and almost all major geographies,” said Dov Charney, American Apparel chairman and CEO.

For the full year, the company’s net loss fell 5.1% to $37.3m, with sales up 13% to $617.3m, comparable store sales up 15% and wholesale revenues rising 12%.