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Famous & Naturalizer sales up at Brown Shoe
Mar '10
Brown Shoe Company, Inc. reported results for the fourth quarter and full year 2009 ended January 30, 2010.

Fourth Quarter Highlights
- Net sales in the fourth quarter of 2009 increased 8.6 percent versus the year-ago quarter;

- Gross profit rate in the fourth quarter of 2009 increased by 390 basis points, versus the same period last year, to 41.1 percent of net sales;

- Net earnings attributable to Brown Shoe Company, Inc. were $5.0 million in the fourth quarter of 2009, or $0.12 per diluted share, compared to a net loss of $153.0 million, or $3.68 per diluted share, in the fourth quarter of 2008; and

- Adjusted net earnings for the fourth quarter of 2009 were $8.1 million, or $0.19 per diluted share, compared to an adjusted net loss of $11.5 million, or $0.28 per diluted share, in the year-ago period. See Schedule 4 attached for a reconciliation to net earnings on a GAAP basis and the discussion of “Non-GAAP Financial Measures” below.

Ron Fromm, Brown Shoe's Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, said, “We are pleased to report better-than-expected fourth quarter results and an overall strong second-half performance. This achievement is even more gratifying given the challenging economic environment that existed throughout the year. Our core brands, Famous Footwear, Naturalizer, and Dr. Scholl's, led the way. Both Famous Footwear and Naturalizer delivered high-single igit same-store sales increases in the quarter and demonstrated the strength of their multi-channel offerings with double digit gains in their direct-to-consumer businesses. Fresh, on-trend product that provided excitement for shoppers, strong inventory management, and more full-priced selling led to a 390 basis point increase in our gross profit rate in the quarter.”

Fromm concluded, “As we look to 2010, we will continue our strategies of driving profitable sales from our core brands, while focusing on improving the productivity of our store base. This requires continuously enhancing product styling and innovation in our brands and retail assortments, evolving impactful consumer engagement programs, and generating greater efficiencies from our operating platform. We are encouraged that the trends we saw in the fourth quarter have continued into the first quarter and, while there remains uncertainty as to the pace of economic recovery, we believe we will see a return to mid-single digit sales growth for Brown Shoe during the year coupled with a doubling of our earnings in the next 12 to 15 months.”

Brown Shoe Company Inc

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