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Joe's Jeans' CEO Discusses Q4 2011 Results - Earnings Call Transcript

Similar to the third quarter, we were [indiscernible] at our retail stores than a year ago. Accordingly, gross margins expanded 4 percentage points from 61% to 65%. Strong same-store sales gains coupled with increased gross margins led to an 8.4% operating income margin, our highest yet for the division.

Also, our store-level operating margin doubled as compared to a year-ago margin. We were pleased with the results of each and every store in our base. During the quarter, we opened our flagship store in New York, and it continues to outperform our expectations.

I would like to point out that we opened the New York store with only $200,000 of capital expenditure, and as any customer will tell you, it's an absolutely beautiful store. Going forward with improvements in our store design, we believe we can cut our store-level capital expenses in half.

Our wholesale sales were flat during the quarter, reversing a trend we have seen over the last several quarters. The slowing decline in our women's wholesale sales, coupled with sales gains in men's and international sales, led to comparable sales for last year. Our Women's business is starting to feel the positive impact of a revamped core line, the 55 Colors program and a few great collection items.

While we are still feeling the impact of drawer reductions from prior seasons, by offering great products, we are starting to see increases of several of our big department store accounts. We feel this bodes well for the coming year. Our future plan is simple, continue to generate brand stature and relevance with our new, unique and exciting fashion product, but also maintain a consistent core basic program that we can rely upon year round.

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