The web grows 15% this year for apparel chain Ascena

September 16, 2015 01:20 PM

It was a tough 12 months for apparel and accessories retail chain Ascena Retail Group Inc., owner of such brands as Justice, Lane Bryant and Ann Taylor. But e-commerce was a bright spot.

For the fiscal year ended July 25:

  • E-commerce grew 14.5% to an Internet Retailer-estimated $529.0 million from $462.0 million in fiscal 2014. Ascena, No. 87 in the Internet Retailer 2015 Top 500 Guide, no longer breaks out e-commerce sales in its earnings releases; Internet Retailer used e-commerce metrics from previous financial reports on file with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission and the company’s reported e-commerce growth rate from the fourth quarter for its estimate.
  • Total sales increased 0.6% to $4.82 billion from $4.79 billion a year ago.
  • The company did not disclose comparable-store sales.
  • Net loss was $236.8 million compared with net income of $133.4 million in fiscal 2014. The loss was attributed to costs associated with Ascena’s acquisition of Ann Inc., a deal that closed in August. Ascena did not include any Ann numbers in its year-end and fourth quarter reports.
  • The web accounted for 11% of all sales in fiscal 2015 compared with 9.6% in fiscal 2014.

“On the operating front, Justicehad a difficult quarter as expected, and Dressbarn missed expectations due to an assortment challenges,” CEO David Jaffe said. “With all that said, we were pleased with fourth quarter performance at Maurices, Lane Bryant and Catherines.”

For the fourth quarter ended July 25:

  • E-commerce sales increased 12.0% to $132.6 million from $118.4 million a year ago.
  • Total sales declined 0.8% to $1.17 billion from $1.18 billion.
  • Comparable-store sales declined 4%.
  • Net loss was $323.4 million compared with net income of $15.7 million in fiscal 2014. The net loss was attributed to litigation costs over a trade name dispute for its Lane Bryant brand and other litigation for its Justice brand.
  • The web accounted for 11.3% of total revenue compared with 10.0% in the fourth quarter of fiscal 2014.

“With the acquisition of Ann, our shared services group is aggressively working to capture the $150 million of identified deal synergies,” Jaffe says.





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