Activewear and lifestyle apparel maker Delta Apparel has reported a drop in first-quarter revenue as a shortened holiday calendar and an earlier shipping cut-off took its toll in the period. 

In its trading statement, the company reported net income of US$0.9m for the first quarter ended 28 December, compared to a net loss of $1.1m a year ago. 

Net sales, however, fell 5.7% to $95.9m from $101.7m a year earlier. Net sales in the Delta Group segment and Salt Life Group segment decreased 5.8% and 4.7%, respectively, from the prior-year period.

Gross margin improved 240 basis points to 20.7% driven by Delta Group’s improved process efficiencies further leveraging the segment’s integrated vertical manufacturing platform.  

“As we previously reported, our first-quarter sales results were impacted by the shortened holiday calendar combined with an earlier shipping cut-off for in-hands holiday receipts. With that said, we are pleased to have delivered strong gross margin performance from our Delta Group segment that more than offset our sales performance during the quarter,” says CEO Robert Humphreys.