ATLANTA — Tommy Bahama is still the star performer for Oxford Industries Inc., which reported a hefty 37 percent increase to $9.5 million in net earnings for the third quarter ended Feb. 27, and a record earnings per share of 58 cents, beating both consensus estimates and Oxford’s guidance.
In reporting the results Thursday afternoon, J. Hicks Lanier, chairman and chief executive officer, said, “The Tommy Bahama business performed exceptionally well during the quarter, offsetting anticipated declines in other businesses. We are extremely pleased with the combination of Oxford and Tommy Bahama. With a greater diversity of products, price points and channels of distribution, we believe the company is well positioned for continuing growth and profitability.”
Sales surged ahead 35 percent to $281 million from $209 million during the third quarter of fiscal 2003. Net income in the 2003 third quarter was $6.9 million, while earnings per share a year ago were a split adjusted 46 cents.
The Tommy Bahama Group contributed $103 million in sales in the quarter, an increase of 15 percent over last year when it operated as an independent, private company. Sales growth was aided by the opening of eight retail stores this fiscal year. At quarter end, the company owned 39 retail stores.
The men’s wear group, however, declined in the third quarter to $100 million from $121 million in the year-ago quarter. Combined shipments to Sears and Lands’ End declined $23 million during the quarter, because of $21 million in initial pipeline fill for the rollout of Lands’ End merchandise to Sears retail stores in last year’s third quarter that did not anniversary in this quarter.
The women’s wear group declined 11 percent to $78 million from $87 million a year ago, which Oxford attributed to lower shipments of women’s apparel to Wal-Mart, whose sales in the product category have been sluggish for several months.
Oxford also has narrowed and reaffirmed its guidance for the fourth quarter of fiscal 2004 to reflect an expectation of continued strong financial results for the rest of the year. Oxford said it anticipates sales in the range of $300 million to $310 million, compared with a prior expectation of $295 million to $310 million, and diluted earnings per share in the range of 85 to 88 cents, compared with a prior expectation of 84 to 88 cents per share. For the year, Oxford expects sales to be in the range of $1.07 billion to $1.08 billion, and diluted earnings per share in the range of $2.26 to $2.29, versus a previous earnings guidance of $2.18 to $2.26.
— Brenda Lloyd