Omnichannel sales account for 31% of Abercrombie’s sales in Q4

March 2, 2017 01:51 PM

Abercrombie & Fitch Co.’s executives are increasingly confident that its efforts to bolster its omnichannel initiatives are heading in the right direction.

The retailer’s direct-to-consumer sales, which include web transactions and sales placed online from within a store, rose roughly 10.7% in the fiscal fourth quarter ended Jan. 28, while total sales fell 6.9%.

Abercrombie’s sales fell short of its fourth quarter guidance, but CEO Fran Horowitz says the retailer is advancing on its strategic priorities last year. Abercrombie promoted Horowitz to CEO in late January. She had been president and chief merchandising officer.

“We have made significant progress on our strategic initiatives across both brands that have proven to increase customer engagement and provide a better customer experience,” she said today during a conference call with analysts. “This includes the development of new store prototypes and loyalty programs, as well as the continued rollout of our omnichannel capabilities.”

The retailer’s store count fell by 34 since the end of 2015’s fourth quarter.

Horowitz noted that 7% of the retailer’s direct-to-consumer sales are bought online but picked up in a store in the U.S., U.K. and Canadian markets. That option is becoming increasingly important to the retailer, No. 58 in the Internet Retailer 2016 Top 500 Guide, given that last month It opened a new store concept in which store associates are tasked with helping shoppers place and pick up online orders in store.

For the fiscal fourth quarter ended Jan. 28, Abercrombie reported:

  • Total revenue of $1.036 billion down 6.9% from $1.113 billion in fiscal Q4 2015.
  • Direct-to-consumer and omnichannel sales accounted for 31% of net sales, up from 28% a year earlier. That translates to an estimated $345.0 million in direct-to-consumer sales, up 10.7% from an estimated $311.6 million.
  • Comparable-store sales, which include U.S. and international, declined 6%. U.S. comparable-store sales also decreased 6%. Comparable-store sales do not include e-commerce.
  • Net income was $48.8 million down 15.4% from $57.7 million.

For fiscal 2016, Abercrombie reported:

  • Total revenue of $3.327 billion down 5.5% from $3.519 billion in fiscal 2015.
  • Direct-to-consumer and omnichannel sales of an estimated $878.6 million, up 5.7% from an estimated $831.0 million.
  • Net income was $7.7 million, down 80.1% from   $38.6 million. 



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