By  on March 29, 2012

Movado Group Inc. swung to a fourth-quarter and full-year profit, citing improved brand positioning and refined product lines.

For the three months ended Jan. 31, income attributable to Movado was $10.7 million, or 42 cents a diluted share, against a loss of $31 million, or $1.25, a year ago. Sales rose 21.2 percent to $122.4 million from $101 million.

For the year, income was $32 million, or $1.27 a diluted share, against a loss of $47.2 million, or $1.91, last year. Sales rose 22.5 percent to $468.1 million from $382.2 million.

Efraim Grinberg, chairman and chief executive officer, said, “Our strong results for the fourth quarter and full fiscal year demonstrate the traction we are gaining from the strategic initiatives we began implementing last year.”

He explained that the company has refined its product lines and introduced more frequent innovation.

“We believe we are only beginning to see the benefits from these initiatives and, with a solid foundation in place and consistent execution against these initiatives, remain confident in our ability to sustain positive momentum into fiscal 2013 and beyond,” Grinberg concluded.

Rick Cote, president and chief operating officer, said the firm generated free cash flow of $78 million for the full year and increased its net cash position to $182 million, which enabled Movado to reinvest in growing the business.

The company is forecasting income of between $27 million to $28 million for fiscal year 2013, or diluted earnings per share of $1.10, on sales of between $500 million to $505 million.

Separately, the board approved payment of a special cash dividend of 50 cents for each share of the firm’s outstanding common stock and class A common stock, to be paid on May 15 to all shareholders on the close of business on April 30. The board also approved an increase in the firm’s quarterly cash dividend to 5 cents.

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