Claire's Stores, Inc. Reports April Same Store Sales
PEMBROKE PINES, Fla., May 10, 2001 -- Claire's Stores, Inc. (NYSE:CLE) reported today sales for the four weeks ended May 5, 2001 decreased 2 percent to $79,059,000 compared with $80,451,000 reported for the four weeks ended April 29, 2000. The company's same store sales for the four-week period ended May 5, 2001 decreased 1 percent.
For the three months ended May 5, the first quarter of fiscal 2002, the Company reported sales increased 1 percent to $235,067,000 compared with the first quarter in the prior year of $232,027,000. First quarter same store sales comparisons were even on a consolidated basis.
Comparable sales by brand for April 2001 were as follows:
-- Claire's North America: positive mid single digits
-- Claire's Europe: negative low single digits
-- Afterthoughts: negative high single digits
-- Mr. Rags: negative high single digits
Rowland Schaefer, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Claire's, said "While we were disappointed that sales were lower than plan for the first quarter of fiscal 2002 we were pleased that our merchandise margins exceeded plan and expenses were controlled. We remain comfortable with our guidance of 16 cents per share for the first quarter. We were also pleased that Claire's North America posted positive same store sales results for the first quarter and the trend continues to be positive in a difficult retail environment," Mr. Schaefer added.
"The majority of the new merchandise has hit the Afterthought stores and we are closely monitoring the reactions from our customers which has been mixed to date. The new direction for Afterthoughts is an evolutionary process and we will continue to reposition and test the merchandise mix until we feel it is right. We continue to be very promotional in the Afterthoughts stores to reduce inventory and make room for the new merchandise. New lifestyle photography will be shipped to the stores next week which demonstrates the new merchandise direction for the Afterthought stores and will also promote Afterthoughts to an older customer," Mr. Schaefer stated.
Claire's Stores, Inc.
(Monthly Sales in 000's)
Reporting Period FY 2002 FY 2001 TOTAL SAME STORE
February $ 67,522 $ 64,616 5% 0%
March $ 88,486 $ 86,960 2% 0%
April $ 79,059 $ 80,451 (2%) (1%)
Year to Date $ 235,067 $ 232,027 1% 0%
The Company plans to release results for the first quarter of fiscal 2002 on May 24, 2001, at approximately 6:30 a.m. A conference call will follow at 10:00 a.m. (EST) to discuss first quarter results and provide guidance for the second quarter. The call in number is 312-470-0008 and the password is Claires (25247). A replay will be available through Friday, June 1st. The replay number is 402-220-9798 and the password is 25247.
Claire's Stores, Inc., the leading mall-based retailer of popular-priced pre-teen and teens accessories, costume jewelry and apparel, currently operates more than 3,000 stores under the following trade names: Claire's Accessories, Afterthoughts, the Icing, Mr. Rags and Velvet Pixies. The stores are located throughout North America, the Caribbean, Japan, United Kingdom, Ireland, Switzerland, Austria, Germany and France.
SAFE HARBOR STATEMENT UNDER THE PRIVATE SECURITIES LITIGATION REFORM ACT OF 1995: This release contains "forward-looking statements" which represent the Company's expectations or beliefs with respect to future events. These forward-looking statements are subject to certain risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those anticipated. Those factors include, without limitation, changes in consumer preferences and consumer spending for pre-teen and teen apparel and accessories, competition, and economic conditions in North America, Europe, United Kingdom and Japan. These and other applicable risks, cautionary statements and factors that could cause actual results to differ from the Company's forward looking statements are included in the Company's filings with the SEC, specifically as described in the Company's annual report on Form 10-K for the fiscal year ended February 3, 2001.
Note: Other Claire's Stores, Inc. press releases, a corporate profile and most recent 10-K and 10-Q reports are available by fax at no charge. For a menu of available material, call 1-800-CLENYSE (1-800-253-6973) or via Claire's Internet home page: http://www.clairestores.com.
Contacts: Sonia Rohan, Director of Investor Relations