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Comparable Store sales up by 6.6% - Belk
Nov '11
Belk, Inc. reported third quarter and year-to-date results that reflect the company's continued success in implementing key business strategies. Third quarter results included a 6.6 percent increase in comparable store sales and a significant improvement in net income compared to the same prior-year period.

Net Sales
Net sales for the 13-week period ended October 29, 2011 increased 5.9 percent to $790.7 million compared to the same prior-year period. The increase resulted from a continuation of improved sales trends in both store and eCommerce sales. Gains for the period were broadly based. Top performing merchandise areas included ladies shoes, cosmetics, hard home merchandise, and men's apparel.

Belk's year-to-date sales totaled $2,471.1 million, an increase of 5.7 percent compared with the same 39-week prior year period. On a comparable store sales basis, year-to-date sales increased 5.8 percent over the prior-year period.

Net Income
Third quarter net income was $0.6 million compared to a $4.2 million loss for the same period last year. Net income excluding non-comparable items was $1.4 million versus a $6.1 million loss in the same prior-year period. A detailed reconciliation of net income to net income excluding non-comparable items is provided at the end of this release.

Year-to-date net income increased 76.4 percent to $57.5 million compared to the same 39-week period last year. Net income excluding non-comparable items was $56.9 million compared to $30.5 million for the same prior-year period.

Tim Belk, chairman and chief executive officer of Belk, Inc., said, “We are encouraged by our strong results and momentum as we enter the fourth quarter. We see this as a good time to continue investing in our business, including technology to add new capabilities, store remodels and expansions, and building our new brand.”

Store Improvements

A number of major store improvement projects were completed by the company during the third quarter. They include the relocation of the Belk store in Corinth, Miss. to an expanded and renovated new building in the same center; the expansion and remodeling of stores in Statesboro, Ga. and Monroe, N.C.; and the remodeling of stores in Cary, N.C., Tupelo, Miss., Charlotte, N.C. (SouthPark Mall), New Bern, N.C., Dublin, Ga. and Vicksburg, Miss. A remodeling of the Richlands, Va. store was completed in July, and a grand reopening of the remodeled store at Myrtle Beach Mall in Myrtle Beach, S.C. was held November 15, 2011.

Additionally, Belk has completed shoe department expansion and remodeling projects in 32store locations this year along with fashion jewelry department remodeling projects in 56 locations. The company also completed the installation of new logo signs in all stores during the period.

Charlotte, N.C.-based Belk Inc. is the nation's largest privately owned mainline department store company with 303Belk stores located in 16 Southern states. The company was founded in 1888 by William Henry Belk in Monroe, N.C., and is in the third generation of Belk family leadership. Its offers a wide assortment of fashion apparel, shoes and accessories for the entire family along with top name cosmetics, a wedding registry and a large selection of quality merchandise for the home.

Belk Inc

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