ANNE KLEIN RELAUNCH DULLS KASPER QUARTER
NEW YORK — Stung by costs to support the Anne Klein business purchased in July, Kasper A.S.L. Ltd.’s losses widened in its fourth quarter ended Jan. 1, to $7.6 million from $3.8 million.
Revenues jumped 22 percent to $72.8 million from $59.7 million due to the November relaunch of Anne Klein sportswear, an increase in licensing income to $3.6 million from $222,000, and store sales.
Arthur Levine, chairman and chief executive, said operating costs grew significantly to support the relaunch and outlet initiatives at Anne Klein, as well as the fall 2000 launch of Anne Klein II to between 225 and 250 stores. Gross margins improved, and inventories are in line, despite the promotional climate during the holiday season.
“We feel we are positioned to experience positive operating leverage in the second half of 2000 as we begin to generate meaningful revenue growth from our Anne Klein operations,” Levine said. “All in all, we believe the strength of our Kasper and Anne Klein brands, combined with our new products, strategically position us as a leading women’s apparel company poised for growth in the wholesale, retail and licensing businesses.”
For the year, there were losses of $4.8 million compared to earnings of $3.2 million, or 47 cents a share, a year ago. Last year includes a $750,000 debt charge. Revenues gained 1.7 percent to $318.2 million from $312.9 million.