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LOEHMANN’S NET VAULTS 65.2%

NEW YORK -- Escalating net sales and vibrant comparable-store results allowed Loehmann's Holdings Inc. to report earnings grew by almost two-thirds in the first quarter of fiscal 2002.<P>For the three months ended May 4, the Bronx, N.Y.-based...

NEW YORK — Escalating net sales and vibrant comparable-store results allowed Loehmann’s Holdings Inc. to report earnings grew by almost two-thirds in the first quarter of fiscal 2002.

This story first appeared in the June 14, 2002 issue of WWD.  Subscribe Today.

For the three months ended May 4, the Bronx, N.Y.-based off-pricer reported net income surged 65.2 percent to $4.2 million, or $1.20 a diluted share. That compares with last year’s profits of $2.5 million, or 76 cents.

Net sales increased 6.4 percent to $93.4 million from $87.8 million a year ago. Loehmann’s same-store sales gained 6.4 percent in the quarter.

“We are pleased with our first-quarter financial results,” said chief executive officer Robert Friedman in a statement. “Our comp-sales increase of 6.4 percent reflects increased demand for our merchandise assortment as our customers continue to respond favorably to our designer and bridge and accessories assortments.”

Strong full-price selling and high rates of sell-through contributed to a gross margin gain of 220 basis points to 39.5 percent.

In other news, Loehmann’s has applied to the Nasdaq to have its shares listed, and the company plans to open a new location in Denver in August. Additionally, Loehmann’s has entered into a contract to sell its building in the Bronx for about $4.5 million. The building had housed the company’s warehouse operations until those were moved to New Jersey in January 2001. The building will continue to serve as Loehmann’s corporate headquarters through a leaseback agreement.