Ulta Beauty continued to gain ground in the fourth quarter, as net sales increased from more transactions and an increase in average ticket.
Net income for the quarter rose 21.3 percent to $90 million, compared with $74.2 million for the prior-year period. Income per diluted share increased 24.3 percent to $1.43 year-over-year, compared with $1.15, and beating analyst consensus of $1.40.
Sales for the quarter ended June 30 increased 21.9 percent to $1.07 billion from $877 million in the prior year period.
Comparable sales, including e-commerce, increased 14.4 percent, versus 10.1 percent year-over-year. That growth was driven by 9.7 percent increase in transactions and a 4.7 percent gain in average ticket. Retail comparable sales increased 12.6 percent, including salon comparable sales gains of 8 percent. Salon sales grew 14.3 percent, to $59 million from $51.6 million in the prior-year period.
E-commerce sales increased 54.9 percent to $55.9 million from $36.1 million in the second quarter of fiscal 2015, accounting for 180 basis points of Ulta’s total company comparable sales increase of 14.4 percent. Ulta opened 24 stores in the quarter, ending with 907 outposts.
For the six months ended June 30, Ulta’s net income increased 29 percent, to $182 million from $141.1 million. The retailer’s net sales also posted gains, growing 22.8 percent to $2.14 million from $1.75 billion in the prior-year period.
Ulta raised its previously announced fiscal 2016 guidance, saying it now expects to achieve comparable sales growth of 11 to 13 percent compared with previous guidance of 10 to 12 percent. The business anticipates earnings per share in the low to mid-20s percentage range, compared to previous guidance of EPS in the low 20s.
“The Ulta Beauty team achieved another quarter of excellent top and bottom line performance, while making significant progress on many elements of our growth strategy,” said Mary Dillon, chief executive officer. “Our second-quarter results reflect a strong pipeline of newness and innovation in merchandising, progress in growing our brand awareness, major milestones related to our loyalty program, continued rapid growth in our e-commerce business, and successful execution of our supply chain investments.”