Ladies' wear retailer Bebe Stores Inc on Thursday said its first-quarter net sales rose 23.3 per cent to $103.1 million, from $83.6m in the year-ago quarter.

Same-store sales increased 12.5 per cent.

Operating income for the first quarter of fiscal 2005 increased to $17.6m or 17.1 per cent of net sales, from $9.2 or 11.0 per cent for the same period last year.

Net earnings were $11.4m, up from $6.0m last time. Diluted earnings per share for the first quarter were $0.29 versus $0.15 in the same period of fiscal 2004.

For the second quarter of fiscal 2005, the company anticipates earnings per share in the range of $0.42 to $0.45 per share, versus $0.35 in the second quarter of fiscal 2004.