"We achieved solid sales growth during the second quarter. Our focus on differentiated merchandise assortments has worked well for us all year, and we expect continued momentum during the important back-to-school selling season," commented Jane Elfers, President and Chief Executive Officer of The Children's Place. "Despite the continued difficult economic environment, we believe lower apparel costs in the back half coupled with strengthening conversion, transactions and average transaction value, will result in positive comp sales and operating margin expansion in fiscal 2012."
The Company opened 19 stores and closed one, ending the second quarter with 1,080 stores.
Net sales from continuing operations increased 3% to $799.3 million fiscal year-to-date 2012, compared to $774.3 million for the same period last year. Comparable retail sales increased 1.1% fiscal year-to-date 2012.GAAP net income for fiscal year-to-date 2012 was $5.6 million, or $0.23 per diluted share. As adjusted, net income was $12.1 million, or $0.49 per diluted share, compared to $19.3 million, or $0.74 per diluted share, for the same period last year. Share Repurchase Program During the second quarter, the Company repurchased 336 thousand shares for approximately $15.6 million. During the first half of fiscal 2012, the Company repurchased 713 thousand shares for approximately $34.8 million. At the end of the quarter, there was approximately $34.4 million remaining of the $50 million share repurchase program which was authorized by the Board of Directors in March 2012. Under the 2012 share repurchase program, the Company may repurchase shares in the open market at current market prices at the time of purchase or in privately negotiated transactions. The timing and actual number of shares repurchased under the program will depend on a variety of factors including price, corporate and regulatory requirements, and other market and business conditions. The Company may suspend or discontinue the program at any time, and may thereafter reinstitute purchases, all without prior announcement.