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Apparel retailer Bebe Stores reports flat Q4FY15 sales
01
Sep '15
For the fourth fiscal quarter ended July 4, 2015, net sales were flat over the fiscal ago period at US apparel retailer Bebe stores.

In a press release, Bebe Stores said its net sales were $104.3 million for the fourth quarter of fiscal 2015, an increase of 0.7 per cent from $103.6 million reported for the fourth quarter of last fiscal.

Comparable store sales for the quarter ended July 4, 2015, rose 1.1 per cent compared to a decrease of 1.9 per cent in the comparable period of the prior fiscal.

Gross margin as a percentage of net sales drove up to 34.8 per cent as against 30.9% in the same quarter of earlier fiscal.

“The improvement in margin was primarily the effect of higher average unit retail, partly driven by fewer promotions and markdowns coupled with better leverage from occupancy costs,” the retailer explained.

SG&A expenses for the reporting quarter were also down at $41.3 million, or 39.6 per cent of net sales versus $56.1 million, or 54.2 per cent of net sales, for the fourth quarter of fiscal 2014.

The company attributed the decrease to a $5.4 million reduction in compensation expense reflecting the effects of savings from restructuring activities.

Advertising expense contributed $3.7 million to the decline as it became more selective in the use of advertising dollars.

The fourth quarter of the prior fiscal was also impacted by store closure and impairment and closure related charges of $4.1 million.

Loss from continuing operations for the fourth quarter of fiscal 2015 was $5.5 million, or $0.07 per share, on 79.6 million shares outstanding.

This compares with a loss of $24.2 million, or $0.30 per share, on 79.5 million diluted shares outstanding for the same period of the previous fiscal.

Included in loss from continuing operations for the quarter were certain incremental costs totaling $1.2 million including charges related to cyber breach and store impairment.

Excluding the impact of these charges, loss from continuing operations was $4.3 million, or $0.05 per share, for the fourth quarter of fiscal 2015.

Including income from discontinued operations of $0.3 million, net loss for the fourth quarter of fiscal 2015 was $5.2 million, or $0.07 per share.

Including a loss from discontinued operations of $10.3 million, net loss for the corresponding quarter of earlier fiscal was $34.5 million, or $0.43 per share.

During the quarter ended July 4, 2015, the retailer closed three Bebe stores and opened one outlet store.

CEO Jim Wiggett said, “In fiscal 2015 we improved our operating results by $35 million or 58 per cent compared to the prior fiscal.

“In the fourth quarter, we achieved our fourth consecutive quarter of comparable store sales growth, in addition to improved gross margin and continued SG&A expense reduction,” he added.

“In addition, we maintained our focus on improving our merchandise offering to appeal to the lifestyle needs, by refining our brand message and building upon our omni-channel capabilities,” Wigget informed. (AR)

Fibre2Fashion News Desk – India

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