KENNETH COLE EARNINGS INCREASE 63%
NEW YORK — Powered by a combination of higher margins and lower costs, Kenneth Cole Productions reported third-quarter earnings increased 63 percent against restated profits of a year ago.
Earnings in the quarter ended Sept. 30 rose to $2.6 million, or 40 cents a share, from $1.6 million, or 27 cents. Results topped the mean Wall Street estimate of 36 cents a share.
Year-ago earnings have been adjusted to reflect a change in tax status and executive compensation following an initial public offering in May.
Sales climbed 30.6 percent to $24.7 million, from $18.9 million. Stanley A. Mayer, executive vice president and chief financial officer, said strength is being shown in shoes and handbags. Cole’s own retail stores, which make up about 10 percent of sales, performed well, as did the company’s catalog. Mayer said comparable-store sales increased in double digits.
In the quarter, the company opened four stores, bringing the total to nine plus two outlet stores. The first shop-in-shop at Bloomingdale’s, opened in August, has been successful, and the company has plans to open others, Mayer said.
For next year, the company plans to open about eight Kenneth Cole retail stores and three to five outlet stores. In the nine months, earnings climbed 69 percent to $6.1 million, or 98 cents a share, from an adjusted $3.6 million, or 61 cents. Sales advanced 35.1 percent to $64.4 million from $47.7 million. Mayer said Wall Street projects earnings per share for the full year of $1.18 to $1.20, against 67 cents last year. “We are very optimistic” about the outlook, he said.
— Fairchild News Service