Gottschalks 3Q Loss More Than Doubles

Double-digit drop in revenues for Fresno, Calif.-based department store.

Gottschalks Inc. cited a tax expense and poor economic conditions Thursday for a third-quarter loss that more than doubled.

This story first appeared in the December 5, 2008 issue of WWD.  Subscribe Today.

In the three months ended Nov. 1, the Fresno, Calif.-based department store chain posted a net loss of $10.1 million, or 76 cents a diluted share, versus a loss of $4.1 million, or 30 cents a share, in last year’s quarter. Revenues fell 12.7 percent to $121.4 million from $139.1 million a year ago. Same-store sales fell 12.1 percent in the period.

“Like most retailers, we are operating against a backdrop of weakened consumer spending and a macroeconomic environment which has sharply deteriorated,” said Jim Famalette, chairman and chief executive officer. “However, we continue to take aggressive steps to manage our business and remain focused on effectively controlling our expenses, inventory and cash.”

The company said a noncash charge of $4.2 million in income tax expense accounted for a portion of the widened loss.

Gottschalks reported earlier Thursday that same-store sales declined 13 percent during November. The strongest categories in the store included men’s furnishings, special sizes and moderate women’s apparel, while dresses was among the weakest.

For the first three quarters of fiscal 2008, the regional retailer posted a loss of $19.7 million, or $1.48 a share, compared with a loss of $13.6 million, or 99 cents a share, last year. Revenues in the three quarters fell 10.3 percent to $385.1 million from $429.3 million.

Gottschalks was delisted by the New York Stock Exchange in October and is now traded on the Pink Sheets. On Thursday, before its quarterly results were reported, shares closed at 66 cents, up 10 cents, or 17.9 percent.