By  on October 7, 2011

TOKYO — Department store operator Takashimaya Co. Ltd. and fashion manufacturer and importer Onward Holdings posted steep declines in first-half profits.

Takashimaya said Friday that its net profit for the six months ended August 31 fell 35.7 percent compared with the same period last year. A spokesman for the company attributed the drop mainly to write-offs related to the closure and sale of its New York store last year.

Net profit for the period totaled 5.38 billion yen, or $66.88 million at average exchange rates for the period.
 
Operating profit grew by 13.5 percent to 9.07 billion yen, or $112.82 million.
 
Takashimaya reported first-half revenues of 410.07 billion yen, or $5.10 billion, down 3 percent from last year.
 
"Our country's economy was dealt a large blow by the Tohoku earthquake in March," the company said. "Since then we've seen a steady recovery, and although there are still some causes for concern such as problems with the power supply, conditions have mostly returned to pre-earthquake levels. Domestic department stores have slowly recovered from the effects of the earthquake, and since June sales have mostly reached averages from last year."
 
Reflecting that optimistic outlook, Takashimaya lifted its earnings forecasts for the fiscal year ending February 29.

The retailer now sees full-year net profit dropping 20.6 percent to 11 billion yen, or $143.38 million at current exchange. However it expects operating profit to grow 10 percent to 20 billion yen, or $260.69 million. The company is forecasting revenues to dip 0.9 percent to 861.4 billion yen, or $11.23 billion.

Onward Holdings said Friday that its net profit for the six months ended August 31 plummeted 93.4 percent year-on-year to just 76 million yen, or $945,440 at average exchange rates for the period. A spokesman for the company said the drop is due both to effects of the March 11 earthquake, as well as to a special loss incurred from property write-offs.
 
The spokesman also said that the company had expected to book a loss of 500 million yen, or $6.22 million, for the period, but avoided this on a gain from selling property.
 
Operating profit for the six months grew 1.9 percent to 1.6 billion yen, or $19.89 million.
 
Sales dropped 2.3 percent from the same period last year, coming in at 113.69 billion yen, or $1.41 billion.
 
Onward left unrevised its guidance for the full year ending February 29. It expects net profit to grow 28.6 percent to 3.5 billion yen, or $45.62 million at current exchange. Operating profit is predicted to grow 14.2 percent to 10.2 billion yen, or $132.95 million. The company forecasts sales of 244.8 billion yen, or $3.19 billion, an increase of just 0.1 percent from the previous fiscal year.

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