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LANDS' END REPORTS FISCAL 1992 YEAR-END AND FOURTH QUARTER RESULTS

 LANDS' END REPORTS FISCAL 1992 YEAR-END AND FOURTH QUARTER RESULTS
 DODGEVILLE, Wis., March 11 /PRNewswire/ -- Lands' End, Inc. (NYSE: LE), today reported results for its fourth quarter and fiscal year ended Jan. 31, 1992.
 The international direct merchant said its net sales for the year totaled $683 million, compared with $604 million in the prior year, an increase of 13 percent. Net income for the year was $28.7 million, up 95 percent from the $14.7 million the company earned in fiscal 1991. Per share earnings were $1.53 for the year just ended, compared with 75 cents a year earlier.
 The weighted average number of common shares outstanding was 18,821,693 for fiscal 1992 and 19,682,877 for fiscal 1991.
 Fourth quarter net sales were $271 million, up 18 percent from net sales of $229 million in the final three months of fiscal 1991. Net income for the final quarter of fiscal 1992 was $20.4 million, up 36 percent from $15.0 million in the prior year, and per share earnings were $1.10, compared with 78 cents per share in the fourth quarter last year.
 In commenting on the results, chief executive officer Richard C. Anderson said, "Our sales and profit growth is gratifying, especially in light of today's recessionary economy. I feel that demand increased mainly because of continued improvements in our merchandise offerings and better creative presentations in our catalogs -- and because we were better prepared to serve our customer.
 "In fiscal 1991, inventory shortages prevented us from converting demand to sales. This year, we increased inventories, and our first- time fulfillment rate is back in the range that we and our customers have come to expect. For the year, and especially in the fourth quarter, a significant portion of our net sales increase was due to the improvement in our fulfillment rate, although a relatively higher rate of returned merchandise partially offset that gain. Most important, we all feel very good that we provided excellent service to our customers during this past Christmas season," said Anderson.
 For the full year just ended, the company was able to ship 87 percent of items ordered by customers at the time the order was placed, compared with 82 percent first-time fulfillment for the prior year.
 Gross profit for the year just ended was $288.1 million, or 42.2 percent of net sales, compared with $243.3 million, or 40.3 percent of net sales, in the prior year. The improvement in gross profit margin was due primarily to higher initial markups of regular catalog merchandise, as well as a lower proportion of sales at less than full catalog price. Liquidations of out-of-season and overstocked merchandise in fiscal 1992 were about 11 percent of net sales, compared with about 13 percent in fiscal 1991.
 Inventory at year-end totaled $122.6 million, up 66 percent from $73.9 million at the end of fiscal 1991. Higher inventory levels were the primary cause of the increase in the company's borrowing on short- term lines of credit, which stood at $13 million at year end, compared with a zero balance at the end of the prior fiscal year. While the company is presently satisfied with the quality of its inventory, higher inventory levels sometimes result in greater product liquidations at lower margins in future periods.
 Selling, general and administrative expenses rose 9 percent to $239.0 million in fiscal 1992 from $218.8 million in the prior year. Additional costs were due primarily to increased catalog mailings and higher postal rates, increased operating expenses associated with higher volume, and higher fixed operating costs.
 As a percentage of sales, SG&A declined from 36.2 percent in fiscal 1991 to 35.0 percent in fiscal 1992. The improvement in the SG&A ratio was due principally to lower rates of lost sales (orders received for products not currently in stock and not backordered) and backorders. Lower lost sales increase average net sales per order and reduce variable operating expenses; lower levels of backorders decrease shipping and handling costs. This reduces SG&A as a percentage of sales.
 Pretax return on sales was 7.0 percent in the year just ended, compared with 4.1 percent in the prior year.
 Capital expenditures in the year just ended were about $5 million, compared with $18 million in the prior year, and depreciation expense was $7.4 million, up from $7.0 million for fiscal 1991.
 Lands' End mailed 122.6 million catalogs in fiscal 1992, 5 percent more than in the year before. The company reduced mailings of its regular full-size catalogs and increased mailings of its smaller specialty catalogs.
 The company's largely proprietary mailing list now includes about 14 million names, and approximately 6 million customers made at least one purchase in the last three years.
 LANDS' END, INC., AND SUBSIDIARY
 Consolidated Statement of Operations
 (Amounts in thousands, except per share data)
 Periods ended Three Months Twelve Months
 Jan. 31 1992 1991 1992 1991
 Net sales $270,915 $229,331 $682,863 $603,975
 Cost of sales (A) 154,373 130,834 394,738 360,704
 Gross profit 116,542 98,497 288,125 243,271
 Selling, general and
 admin. expenses (A) 82,644 73,843 238,958 218,757
 Income from operations 33,898 24,654 49,167 24,514
 Other income (expense):
 Interest expense (368) (138) (1,550) (1,018)
 Interest income 47 797 312 1,187
 Other (33) 58 (437) 260
 Total other inc. (exp.) (354) 717 (1,675) 429
 Inc. before inc. taxes 33,544 25,371 47,492 24,943
 Income tax provision 13,180 10,367 18,760 10,200
 Net income $ 20,364 $ 15,004 $ 28,732 $ 14,743
 Net income per share $ 1.10 $ 0.78 $ 1.53 $ 0.75
 Weighted average
 shares outstanding 18,516 19,351 18,822 19,683
 (A) -- Certain financial statement amounts have been reclassified to be consistent with the fiscal 1992 presentation.
 LANDS' END, INC., AND SUBSIDIARY
 Consolidated Balance Sheets
 (Dollars in thousands)
 1/31/92 1/31/91
 ASSETS
 Current assets:
 Cash and cash equivalents $ 1,390 $ 27,264
 Receivables 830 1,209
 Inventory 122,558 73,863
 Prepaid expenses 6,495 5,488
 Total current assets 131,273 107,824
 Property, plant and equipment, at cost:
 Land and buildings 53,451 53,127
 Fixtures and equipment 51,518 47,646
 Leasehold improvements 1,489 1,646
 Construction in progress 44 --
 Total property, plant and equipment 106,502 102,419
 Less - accumulated depreciation
 and amortization 31,975 24,843
 Property, plant and equipment, net 74,527 77,576
 Total assets $205,800 $185,400
 LIABILITIES AND SHAREHOLDERS' INVESTMENT
 Current liabilities:
 Lines of credit $ 13,000 $ --
 Current maturities of long-term debt 1,682 1,682
 Accounts payable 28,351 37,797
 Advance payment on orders 635 446
 Accrued liabilities 16,820 13,769
 Accrued profit sharing 1,234 --
 Income taxes payable 12,826 7,080
 Total current liabilities 74,548 60,774
 Long-term debt, less current maturities 1,667 3,349
 Deferred income taxes 2,953 4,451
 Shareholders' investment:
 Common stock, 20,110,294 shares issued 201 201
 Donated capital 8,400 8,400
 Paid-in capital 23,782 23,782
 Deferred compensation (886) (1,046)
 Retained earnings 123,418 98,381
 Treasury stock, 1,638,840 and 892,500
 shares at cost, respectively (28,283) (12,892)
 Total shareholders' investment 126,632 116,826
 Total liabilities and shareholders'
 investment $205,800 $185,400
 -0- 3/11/92
 /CONTACT: Charlotte LaComb of Lands' End, 608-935-4835/
 (LE) CO: Lands' End, Inc. ST: Wisconsin IN: REA SU: ERN


GK -- NY010 -- 7200 03/11/92 09:10 EST
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Date:Mar 11, 1992
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