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Talbots announces net loss for fourth Quarter
Mar '08
The Talbots Inc announced a preliminary unaudited net loss of $171 million or ($3.23) per share on a GAAP basis for the fourth quarter ended February 2, 2008.

This result compares to a breakeven net income per share for the fourteen week period ended February 3, 2007, which included acquisition related and financing costs of approximately $0.15 per share.

The Company announced that it has not yet completed impairment testing of its J. Jill brand intangible assets acquired in May 2006. However, at this time the Company has recorded a preliminary non-cash impairment charge to fourth quarter earnings of approximately $144 million after tax or approximately $2.71 per share.

This preliminary charge is greater than the initial estimate provided on February 6, 2008, due to more conservative growth and earnings projections for the J. Jill brand, combined with a larger discount rate assigned to forward projections. The Company anticipates that impairment testing will be completed in the coming weeks.

The Company's operating results were better than its previously announced expectations on a non-GAAP basis. Specifically, on a non-GAAP basis, the preliminary fourth quarter loss was $12 million or ($0.22) per share, excluding.

Total consolidated Company sales for the thirteen weeks ended February 2, 2008 were $587 million, versus reported sales of $638 million for the fourteen weeks ended February 3, 2007.

By brand, retail storesales were $388 million for Talbots, compared to $433 million for the fourteen week period a year ago, and $86 million for J. Jill, compared to $91 million a year ago.

Consolidated direct marketing sales for the recent period, including catalog and Internet, were $113 million, compared to $114 million a year ago.

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