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AnnTaylor takes conservative approach to new store growth
31
Jan '08
AnnTaylor Stores Corporation announced a multi-year restructuring program that is designed to enhance profitability and improve overall effectiveness, following the Company's comprehensive review of its SG&A cost structure. The Company also announced that, in light of the ongoing macroeconomic weakness and uncertainty in the retail sector, it is taking a conservative approach to new store growth in fiscal 2008.

The key elements of the restructuring program include:

• The optimization of the Company's store portfolio, including the closure of 117 underperforming stores over the 2008-2010 period;
• An organizational streamlining, primarily involving the downsizing of the Company's headquarters staff by approximately 13%; and
• A broad-based productivity initiative, including the strategic procurement of non-merchandise goods and services, to improve efficiencies and effectiveness across the organization and store base.

Commenting on the announcement, Ann Taylor President and Chief Executive Officer Kay Krill stated, "Following a very thorough review of our entire business and cost structure, we are taking actions to enhance our overall effectiveness and improve our profitability, and we believe that doing so will increase our operating margin by more than 200 basis points over the next three years.

This restructuring is designed to position us as a stronger, leaner Company that can be more agile in responding to economic realitiesand marketplace opportunities, and we are confident that this program will not only improve our bottom line, but also enable us to reinvest in our business to drive more profitable growth in the future. I firmly believe we are better positioned today to successfully execute a program of this nature than at any time in our history."

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