Oxford Industries Inc. on Tuesday posted a rise in fourth-quarter profits, even excluding the gain from the sale of its former Oxford Apparel Group.
For the three months ended Jan. 29, net income was $53.4 million, or $3.22 a diluted share, from $3.9 million, or 24 cents, in the 2009 quarter. Excluding the gain from its Jan. 3 sale of Oxford Apparel Group to Li & Fung Ltd. and the group’s previous contribution to results, earnings from continuing operations jumped 54.6 percent to $1.7 million from $1.1 million. Sales rose 10 percent to $157.7 million from $143.4 million.
J. Hicks Lanier, chairman and chief executive officer of Oxford, said, “We are very pleased with the improved operating results we achieved in fiscal 2010 and we are even more excited about our outlook for 2011.”
Lanier said direct-to-consumer results across all brands for the first eight weeks of fiscal 2011 have been “stellar.” He noted that the “sale of Oxford Apparel and the addition of Lilly Pulitzer have not only left us with a collection of great aspirational lifestyle brands, but also the balance sheet and financial flexibility to support the sustained growth we expect from these businesses.”
Tommy Bahama’s sales rose 14.9 percent to $108.9 million, due to higher direct-to-consumer sales and a comparable-store sales increase. Ben Sherman sales fell 15.1 percent to $20.9 million due in part to contributions in 2009 from businesses that it exited. Lanier Clothes’ sales declined 11.3 percent to $19.7 million because of lower sales in the private label business. Lilly Pulitzer, which the firm acquired on Dec. 21, saw net sales of $6 million during the six weeks of the quarter that Oxford owned the company.
For the current fiscal year, the company projected diluted earnings from continuing operations and before the impact of purchase accounting charges for the Lilly Pulitzer acquisition of between $1.95 and $2.05 a share. Sales are expected at $725 million to $740 million.
For the first quarter, diluted EPS is estimated at 95 cents to $1.05. The firm guided sales projections in the range of $200 million to $210 million. That’s compared with $163.6 million in the first quarter of 2010.
For the year, net earnings were $78.7 million, or $4.75 a diluted share, better than five times the $14.6 million, or 90 cents, registered in 2009. Earnings from continuing operations were $16.2 million from $1.4 million in the prior year. Sales rose 3.2 percent to $603.9 million from $585.3 million.