Dillard’s Inc.’s third-quarter profits shot up 85 percent as better sales and steady gross margins reverberated on the department store’s bottom line. Net income increased to $26.6 million, or 50 cents a diluted share, from $14.4 million, or 22 cents, a year earlier. Revenues for the three months ended Oct. 29 rose 3.2 percent to $1.42 billion from $1.37 billion.

This story first appeared in the November 14, 2011 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.

“Our 5 percent comparable-store sales performance provided strong income momentum as we maintained gross margin and leveraged our operating expenses,” said William Dillard 2nd, chief executive officer.

Gross margins in the company’s retail operations held steady at 36.8 percent.

The ceo also said the quarter’s result “further solidifies our confidence in our strategy as we enter the holiday season.”

Dillard’s is in the process of reinventing itself as an upscale department store more akin to Nordstrom than Macy’s, with new product offerings and better customer service.

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