Net sales from our retail segment in the fourth quarter increased 18% to $7.0 million compared to $5.9 million in the prior year comparative period. The growth in retail sales was driven by revenue contribution from growing our store base from 22 to 28 stores in the comparative periods and a 6% same store sales increase. Gross margins for our retail segment increased to 68% from 65% in the year ago period. Retail operating expense increased as a result of additional expenses associated with expanding our store base compared to the prior year period. Overall, for the fourth quarter, we had operating income of $526,000 compared to $496,000 a year ago for our retail segment.
Mr. Crossman commented, “We continued our upward trajectory in fiscal 2012 from our retail segment. We continue to be pleased with the performance of our new and existing stores, especially with our same store sales increase of 6% in the face of tough promotional activity from our competitors during the quarter and from promotions in our own stores during the year ago comparable period.”
WholesaleNet sales for our wholesale segment in the fourth quarter of fiscal 2012 increased 37% to $26.8 million compared to $19.5 million in the year ago period. Within our wholesale business, both of our men’s and women’s Joe’s® sales channels experienced growth and we benefited from sales from our else™ brand. Gross margins for our wholesale segment were 41% for the fourth quarter of fiscal 2012 compared to 40% in the prior year comparable quarter. For the fourth quarter, wholesale operating expense increased to $3.7 million compared to $3.2 million in the year ago period. Our wholesale operating income increased to $7.3 million in the fourth quarter of fiscal 2012 compared to $4.7 million in the prior year comparative period.
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