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Dillard’s, Inc. Reports Record Fourth Quarter And Fiscal Year Results

Sales trends were strongest in ladies accessories and lingerie and men’s apparel and accessories. Sales were weakest in the home and furniture category. Sales trends were strongest in the Central region, followed by the Eastern and Western regions, respectively.

Net Sales – Fiscal Year

Net sales for the 53 weeks ended February 2, 2013 were $6.593 billion and 6.264 billion for the 52 weeks ended January 28, 2012.

Total merchandise sales for the 53-week period ended February 2, 2013 were $6.489 billion and $6.194 billion for the 52-week period ended January 28, 2012. Total merchandise sales increased 5% for the 53-week period compared to the 52-week period. Based upon comparable weeks, total sales increased 3% and sales in comparable stores increased 4% for the fiscal year.

Gross Margin/Inventory

Gross margin from retail operations (which excludes CDI) improved 40 basis points of sales to 34.6% for the 14 weeks ended February 2, 2013 compared to 34.2% for the prior year fourth quarter. Consolidated gross margin for the 14 weeks ended February 2, 2013 improved 50 basis points of sales to 34.4% from 33.9% during the prior year fourth quarter.

Gross margin from retail operations improved 30 basis points of sales to 36.1% for the 53 weeks ended February 2, 2013 compared to 35.8% for the prior year 52-week period ended January 28, 2012. Consolidated gross margin for the 53 weeks ended February 2, 2013 was 35.6% compared to 35.4% during the prior fiscal year.

Inventory in comparable stores decreased 1% at February 2, 2013 compared to January 28, 2012.

Dillard’s credits its consistent success in both sales and gross margin performance to effective execution of its merchandise strategy which the Company believes sets Dillard’s apart from its peer group. Key initiatives within the strategy include:

  • Presenting limited distribution, high profile brands not typically found in department stores along with well known, highly regarded national brands
  • Developing and offering fashionable, nationally recognized exclusive brands which are revered by customers for their styling as well as their quality
  • Equipping sales associates, beauty advisors and merchandise specialists with comprehensive product knowledge and customer service tools to exceed the expectations of the Dillard’s customer
  • Presenting merchandise in edited, limited assortments and in engaging formats which encourage interaction with sales associates and expedite the sale
  • Flowing merchandise receipts to stores in shorter and more frequent intervals and pinpointing replenishment based upon immediate feedback from improvements in data analysis and logistical response

Advertising, Selling, Administrative and General Expenses

Advertising, selling, administrative and general expenses (“operating expenses”) were $474.9 million (22.5% of sales) and $440.8 million (22.4%), respectively, during the 14 weeks ended February 2, 2013 and the 13 weeks ended January 28, 2012. The increase in expenses is primarily due to the additional week of operations during the 2012 reporting period. On a normalized basis for the 13-week periods, increases in selling payroll and related payroll taxes were partially offset by savings in advertising and services purchased.

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