Ross Stores Inc.’s fourth-quarter profits advanced 23.3 percent as the 1,091-door offpricer logged another strong year.
Fourth-quarter profits rose to $236.6 million, or $1.07 a diluted share, from $192 million, or 85 cents, a year earlier. Earnings met analysts’ projections and shares of the retailer inched up 0.6 percent to $56.52 in early trading on Wall Street.
Sales for the three months ended Feb. 2 increased 15.1 percent to $2.76 billion from $2.4 billion as comparable-store sales rose 5 percent.
Last year, the company repurchased 7.5 million shares of its common stock for a total of $450 million and posted profits of $786.8 million on sales of $9.72 billion. In January, the retailer also boosted its quarterly dividend by 21 percent to 17 cents a share.
"The growth of our stock repurchase and dividend programs has been driven by the significant amounts of cash our business generates after self-funding store expansion and other capital needs,” said Michael Balmuth, vice chairman and chief executive officer.
The offpricer has repurchased stock every year since 1993 and has boosted its cash dividend 19 times since 1994.
"We plan to stay intently focused on our core off-price mission of consistently delivering great bargains to our customers,” Balmuth said. “This continues to be the key to maximizing our opportunities for growth in sales and profits over both the short and the long term."
Harrods plans to remove the famous statue of Princess Diana and Dodi Al Fayed from the bottom of the Egyptian escalators and hand it back to Mohamed Al-Fayed. “We are very proud to have played our role in celebrating the lives of Diana, Princess of Wales and Dodi Al Fayed at Harrods and to have welcomed people from around the world to visit the memorial for the past 20 years,” said Michael Ward, Harrods managing director. “With the announcement of the new official memorial statue to Diana, Princess of Wales at Kensington Palace, we feel that the time is right to return this memorial to Mr. Al Fayed and for the public to be invited to pay their respects at the palace.” More on the news, with reporting by @loreleimarfil, at WWD.com. #wwdnews
@prada is introducing a new project at its men’s fall 2018 show this Sunday: “Prada Invites.” The fashion house invited four celebrated creative minds – @ronanaerwanbouroullec, Konstantin Grcic, @herzogdemeuron and @rem.koolhaas – to each create a unique item with its iconic nylon material. The designs will be unveiled on the runway show, which will take place at the company’s warehouse in Viale Ortles 25. #wwdfashion #mfwm (📷: @martinocarrera)
@kering_official is spinning off its stake in puma in an effort to focus on its luxury brands, the brand operator announced yesterday. “We are proud to have supported the turnaround of Puma, which now has unrivaled capabilities to take full advantage of the specific dynamics of its global markets and is poised to achieve substantial growth,” said François-Henri Pinault, Kering’s chief executive officer and chairman. Artémis will become a “long-term strategic shareholder” of Puma with a 29 percent stake. #wwdnews #wwdfashion (📷: @jilliansollazzo)
The fashion world mourns for celebrated street style photographer, Nabile Quenum, who died at age 32 in Paris.
Quenum, creator of the fashion blog “J’ai Perdu Ma Veste,” was a fashion week fixture, and regularly shot for New York magazine’s The Cut, among other outlets, and brands such as Louis Vuitton, Moncler and Adidas. He was also actively involved in the #NoFreePhotos initiative, which kicked off in the fall. Read more about Quenum in @kbsmoke's story on WWD.com. #wwdnews
@verwanggang and @maisonladuree have teamed up on a dessert collab called Vera Wang Pour Ladurée. The collection, which launched this week, features a specialty macaroon, as well as a wedding cake inspired by one of the designer’s gowns. “I could not imagine a more delicate or sophisticated creation to grace any couple’s celebration,” said Wang. #wwdfashion