“The tailwinds continue to blow.”
So said Richard Hayne, chairman and chief executive officer of Urban Outfitters Inc., who has been pointing to stronger consumer trends for at least 18 months and reported Monday that his company posted big third-quarter gains on the back of a “vigorous U.S. economy, record consumer confidence, ultra-low unemployment and a changing fashion silhouette.”
The firm’s revenue rose 9 percent to $973.5 million for the three months ended Oct. 31 as comparable sales rose 8 percent with double-digit e-commerce gains and “positive” sales in its stores. All of the firm’s brands, channels and geographies posted gains. By division, the firm’s Anthropologie Group’s net sales rose 9.4 percent to $385 million, Urban Outfitters gained 7.2 percent to $379.2 million and Free People advanced 12 percent to $202.2 million.
That all led to a 71.9 percent increase in third-quarter income to $77.5 million, or 70 cents a diluted share.
And Hayne told analysts on a conference call that there was plenty more growth ahead in e-commerce, international markets, wholesale and from the firm’s smaller concepts, such as garden concept Terrain.
E-commerce remains the company’s largest opportunity, the ceo said, and already accounts for about 40 percent of the retail segment’s business.
And the business is taking a very international flair.
“Singles’ day is the biggest one-day sales event in the world,” Hayne said. “And this year the Urban brand achieved the number-one apparel brand on Tmall Global. As you may know, global is Tmall’s smaller platform, for brands that don’t carry inventory in the country. We’re told Tmall Classic, their larger platform, generates approximately 10 times greater customer demand than global. Thus, we plan to launch all three brands on Tmall Classic next year.”
But that doesn’t mean the retailer is forgetting its roots. The firm plans to open 10 to 20 new stores across all of its bands in Europe in each of the next two years.