By  on November 11, 2009

Innerwear maker Maidenform Brands Inc. beat Wall Street estimates Tuesday with an 89.9 percent increase in third-quarter profits.

The increase was driven by strength in the core bra and shapewear businesses, replenishment of its Donna Karan and DKNY licensed brands and the introduction of programs with off-price retailers.

The Iselin, N.J.-based vendor reported net income of $16 million, or 67 cents a diluted share, for the period ended Oct. 3. This compared with a profit of $8.4 million, or 36 cents a share, in the year-ago quarter. Net sales climbed 14.3 percent to $128.7 million from $112.6 million in the 2008 period. Without a one-time gain related to deferred tax assets, earnings per share in the most recent quarter were 42 cents. Analysts polled by Yahoo expected EPS of 35 cents on revenue of $129 million.

Wholesale sales grew 17.9 percent to $111.9 million, bolstered by a $12.2 million sales gain to $21.4 million in its “other” segment. Sales at mass merchants grew 19 percent to $33.8 million, but at department stores, revenue decreased 1 percent to $56.7 million. Retail sales slipped 5.1 percent to $16.8 million as same-store sales slumped 3 percent.

Maurice Reznik, chief executive officer, said, “We are executing our strategies and continue to gain share in the bra and shapewear categories across all of our channels of distribution while simultaneously controlling costs and investing in our business for the future.”

Net income for the nine months jumped 31.5 percent to $29.3 million, or $1.24 a diluted share, versus a profit of $22.3 million, or 95 cents, a year ago. Revenue expanded 12 percent to $357.1 million, from $318.8 million.

Maidenform said it forecasts EPS for the fourth quarter in the range of 17 cents and 21 cents a share, on sales that are projected to rise between 3 and 6 percent, or between $97.6 million and $100.5 million. Analysts are looking for fourth-quarter EPS of 20 cents on sales of $98.2 million.

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