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J.Crew announces strong operating income for Q2

Sep '05
Fashion retailer J.Crew Group announced its operating income for the thirteen weeks ended July 30, 2005 increased by 150 percent to $20 million, compared to $8 million in the comparable period last year. This increase was driven primarily by a 22 percent increase in revenues and higher gross margins.

Consolidated revenues for the thirteen weeks ended July 30, 2005 increased 22 percent to $229 million from $188 million last year. Store sales (Retail and Factory stores) increased by 17 percent to $163 million, compared to $139 million last year. Comparable store sales increased by 15 percent. Direct sales (Internet and Catalog) increased by 35 percent to $58 million, as compared to $43 million last year.

Gross margin increased to 42 percent of revenues in the second quarter, compared to 39 percent last year. The increase was primarily attributable to lower markdowns in all sales channels. Selling, general and administrative expenses during the quarter were $77 million, or 34 percent of revenues vs. $66 million or 35 percent in the prior year period.

Net income for the second quarter increased by $16 million to $2 million, compared to a net loss of $14 million in the prior year. This increase resulted from the $12 million increase in operating income and a $4 million decrease in interest expense as a result of debt refinancing in the fourth quarter of 2004.

Gross margin for the twenty-six weeks ended July 30, 2005 increased to 44 percent of revenues compared to 40 percent last year, resulting from a decrease in buying and occupancy costs as a percentage of revenues and lower markdowns across all channels.

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