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E-commerce biz produces strong results - New York & Co
18
Mar '11
New York & Company Inc, a specialty apparel chain with 555 retail stores, announced results for the fourth quarter and full fiscal year ended January 29, 2011.

Fourth Quarter and Fiscal Year Results

For the fourth quarter of fiscal year 2010, net sales were $303.2 million, as compared to $298.0 million for the fourth quarter of fiscal year 2009. Comparable store sales for the fourth quarter of fiscal year 2010 increased 1.7% compared to a decrease of 7.7% in the prior year fourth quarter.

Operating income for the fourth quarter of fiscal year 2010 was $12.3 million, exceeding the Company's previous guidance range of $9.0 million to $12.0 million and reflecting a significant improvement from the prior year's fourth quarter operating income of $3.4 million.

Net income from continuing operations in the fourth quarter of fiscal year 2010 increased to $14.9 million, or $0.24 per diluted share, which includes favorable non-operating tax adjustments of $0.04 per diluted share. This compares to the Company's previous guidance range of net income from continuing operations of $0.15 to $0.19 per diluted share on a GAAP basis. This also compares to net income from continuing operations in the prior year fourth quarter of $2.5 million, or $0.04 per diluted share, which included a previously disclosed non-operating loss of $0.02 per diluted share related to restructuring charges.

Gregory Scott, New York & Company's CEO, stated: "Our fourth quarter results reflect a strong focus on controlling inventory and improving our margins. We were successful in driving both sales and merchandise margin from last year through an improved product assortment, strong in-store promotional events and targeted direct marketing efforts.

“This, combined with leverage of our buying and occupancy costs, resulted in a significant improvement in our fourth quarter operating income versus last year. We are pleased with our positioning as we enter fiscal year 2011. Our strategies are generating their intended results and we expect to demonstrate continued progress as we focus on our key priorities of improving sales productivity and profitability."

During the fourth quarter:

• The Company's E-commerce business produced strong results with sales up 23.9% from the prior year level.
• The accessories business was strong with jewelry reflecting significant comparable store sales increases and improved merchandise margin.
• Gross profit as a percentage of net sales improved by 230 basis points versus the prior year, driven by an improvement in merchandise margin and leverage in buying and occupancy costs.
• Selling, general and administrative expenses were flat at 25.1% of net sales.
• Inventory remains tightly managed with total year-end inventory declining by 5.7%. In-store inventory, which excludes in-transit inventory, decreased 13.2%.
• The Company ended the year with $77.4 million of cash-on-hand with no outstanding borrowings under its revolving credit facility.

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