Children's clothing chain Gymboree Corp on Wednesday posted a five per cent climb in September same-store sales over the year-ago period and launched its new specialty retail concept for baby apparel.

The company said in a press release total sales for the five weeks to October 5 climbed to $49.8 million from $47.2m last year and also raised its earnings expectations for the third quarter and full year.

Gymboree said it now sees quarterly earnings of 15-17 cents a share compared to its original forecast of 13-15 cents, reaffirmed its prior fourth quarter earnings guidance of 38-40 cents and raised its full year outlook to 69-73 cents from 67-71 cents.

"Our customers continue to respond positively to our new product lines," said chairman and CEO, Lisa Harper. "We are also pleased with the progress of our operational initiatives, including our improved inventory management processes, that have allowed us to increase our gross margins."

She added its new niche brand Janie and Jack will offer distinctive baby apparel, accessories and gifts and will target the $2 billion newborn specialty gift and apparel market with the opening of 11 US stores and online shop.

Clothing, sized preemie to 3T, has a European-style silhouette and is made from uspscale fabrics including fine-gauge cottons, cozy velours, cashmere blends and angel-soft sherpas.

"Over the last couple of years, we have built a best-practice platform we can use to launch fresh ideas that leverage our core competency of designing, developing and delivering unique, high-quality products," Harper said.

"One element of The Gymboree Corp's growth strategy today is to use that platform to support multiple specialty niche brands, and Janie and Jack is the first of those brands."