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May 3, 2010

Q4 Sales and Profits Increase at Inter Parfums

Inter Parfums, Inc. reported favorable results for the fourth quarter and year ended Dec. 31, 2009. For the quarter, net sales increased 13% to $112.9 million. European-based operations rose 16% to $96.3 million; however, U.S. sales declined 3% to $16.6 million. Net income increased 7% to $5.5 million.

For the year ended Dec. 31, 2009, net sales fell 8% to $409.5 million. Net income decreased 6% to $22.4 million.

Executive vice president and chief financial officer Russell Greenberg commented, “The year ended on a strong note in terms of sales and earnings. After comparable quarterly sales declines through the first nine months of 2009, net sales increased in the final quarter of the year in both absolute and constant dollars. In the face of the global economic downturn, and in the absence of a major women’s fragrance launch in 2009, our financial performance for the year was better than we anticipated.”

Discussing new product launches, Jean Madar, chairman of the board and chief executive officer, noted, “With regard to European-based operations in 2010, our new product launch schedule has begun with Burberry Sport fragrances for men and women. In July, we are launching our first Burberry cosmetics collection in approximately 30 shops globally. For Lanvin and Paul Smith, we are creating a new women’s scent for each and new scents for both men and women are coming to market for the Van Cleef & Arpels brand. Plans call for our first Jimmy Choo fragrance to unveil in early 2011 and with regard to Montblanc, we will be taking over the inventory and distribution of their legacy fragrances mid-year and new product development is in the works with spring 2011 as our target for a new fragrance launch under the brand.”

In the U.S., new fragrance and ancillary products under the Gap brand for both men and women are scheduled to launch later this year. Also in the works are new fragrances for the Bebe and Brooks Brothers labels, and a special fragrance collection for Anthropologie stores will also be introduced. In addition to launching new scents, the firm is pursuing growth in its specialty retail business by expanding the footprint of its international distribution of the products it develops for several of its retail partners.

Another Good Season at Ulta

Ulta posted favorable financial results for the fourth quarter and fiscal year ended Jan. 30, 2010.For the quarter, net sales increased 16.1% to $396.4 million and net income climbed 64.6% to $20.2 million.

“We are very pleased with our fourth quarter performance,” said Lyn Kirby, Ulta’s president and chief executive officer. “Our results surpassed the increased guidance we provided in January and included a 6.2% comparable store sales increase, a 60 basis point improvement in merchandise margin and continued momentum of our cost management initiatives, all of which contributed to a 61.9% increase in diluted earnings per share—a strong finish to the year.”

This year, Kirby said the company’s priorities are threefold: growing profitable market share, achieving permanent cost efficiencies and delivering free cash flow. Last year, comparable store sales increased 1.4% and square footage increased 12%. The company also achieved $19 million in permanent cost reductions and generated free cash flow of $104.7 million.

“As we begin fiscal 2010, we continue to build on our successful 2009 game plan. We are particularly optimistic about our opportunities for market share gains through comparable store sales growth and new store expansion,” Kirby noted.

“We expect to continue to generate free cash flow in 2010 while we increase our capital investment in support of our long term growth and believe that we will deliver another strong earnings performance in fiscal 2010,” Kirby added.

For the fiscal year 2009, net sales increased 12.7% to $1.2 billion. Operating income rose 47.2% to $68.2 million; net income jumped 55.8% to $39.4 million.

Turnaround at Yankee Candle In Q4, 2010 Full Year Report

Yankee Holding Corp. and The Yankee Candle Company, Inc. posted favorable financial results for the fourth quarter and full year ended Jan. 2, 2010. Sales for the company’s continuing operations for the fourth quarter of 2009 jumped 7.5% to $274.2 million.

Sales of the company’s wholesale business increased 13.3% to $81.7 million. Retail sales rose 5.2% to $192.6 million. Retail comparable store sales, including the South Deerfield and Williamsburg flagship stores, increased 0.6% versus the prior year fourth quarter.

“We were pleased to see positive momentum in the fourth quarter and the all important holiday season,” said Harlan Kent, chief executive officer. “We delivered positive comparable store sales in our retail division and saw solid sell through in our wholesale channels. Together with our continued cost control and productivity initiatives, this performance allowed us to outperform our internal plan and to make significant payments toward our debt well ahead of schedule.”

For the fiscal year ended Jan. 2, 2010, retail sales increased 2.7% to $401.3 million. However, wholesale sales fell 6.3% to $279.8 million.

According to the company, the decrease in wholesale sales was primarily driven by the loss of Linens ‘N Things due to its 2008 bankruptcy and the weakened economic environment. However, the decrease was partially offset by an increase in sales in European operations and the full rollout of the company’s new Home Classics brand at Target stores nationwide.
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