Retail sales at the Elizabeth Arden flagship counters have increased 20% in North America year over year since conversion.
However, for the fourth quarter ended June 30, 2013, net sales were nearly flat, inching up 0.8% to $267.6 million. Despite the gains, E. Scott Beattie, chairman, president and CEO, Elizabeth Arden, Inc., said he was disappointed with the results.
“There were two primary factors that caused our sales and earnings results to be below our expectations in fiscal 2013. The first was due to weakness at one of our largest North American mass retail customers, both in terms of retail sales performance and replenishment rate. The second factor was that are growth projections for the Elizabeth Arden brand proved to be overly optimistic given the complexity and scope of transition underway for the brand repositioning.”
Beattie continued, “We remain confident in our repositioning efforts and, in fact, are accelerating the execution of the Elizabeth Arden brand repositioning. We expect to incur the final phase of repositioning expenses, including eliminating pre-repositioned product inventory and exiting unprofitable doors, in fiscal 2014. While resulting in near-term charges, this is expected to drive improved performance of the Elizabeth Arden brand going forward. Separately, we are taking steps to improve efficiencies in our sales organizations and in the overall indirect overhead structure.”
Beattie also noted that it was a transitional year for the company, and said that progress had been made in driving its Western European fragrance initiative and enhancing brand repositioning.
“Our priorities remain to accelerate global growth,” he concluded.
For the fiscal year ending June 30, 2014, Elizabeth Arden expects net sales to increase by 3-5%.