• Narrows Q4 loss to $0.9m
  • Net sales slipped 5.3% to $7.1m 
  • “Optimistic about long-term growth”

Casual clothing firm People's Liberation Inc has ended its financial year with “record sales results and an improved bottom-line” and says it optimistic about its long-term growth prospects.

The comments came as it posted a narrower loss of $0.9m in the three months to 31 December 2009, down from a loss of $2.4m a year earlier.

Net sales slipped 5.3% to $7.1m from $7.5m last time, which the company blamed on pending litigation with Charlotte Russe for breach of contract.

But it said the drop in net sales was offset by higher wholesale and retail sales of the J.Lindeberg brand.

A shift in the production of denim products away from contract manufacturers in Los Angeles to cheaper full package suppliers in Mexico helped lift gross margin to 50.4% from 47.1%.

And lower design and sample costs contributed to a 26% drop in total operating expenses for the quarter to $4.4m.

For the year, net loss narrowed to $0.7m from a loss of $3.1m the year before, and net sales rose 10.7% to $35.6m from $32.2m.

Chief executive officer Colin Dyne said the firm is “focused on our core business and growth initiatives,” including retail expansion for the William Rast and J.Lindeberg brands in new and existing markets.