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Aeropostale Reports Results for Fourth Quarter and Fiscal 2010

Fourth Quarter Earnings of $0.95 Per Share, Including $0.03 Per Share Unfavorable Impact Due to Higher Effective Tax Rate
Provides First Quarter and Full Year Fiscal 2011 Guidance

NEW YORK, March 10, 2011 /PRNewswire via COMTEX/ --

Aeropostale, Inc. (NYSE: ARO), a mall-based specialty retailer of casual apparel for young women and men, today reported results for the fourth quarter and fiscal 2010, as well as provided guidance for the first quarter and full year fiscal 2011.

Fourth Quarter Performance

Diluted net earnings for the fourth quarter of fiscal 2010 were $0.95 per diluted share, including $0.03 per share unfavorable impact due to a higher than expected effective tax rate. The Company reported net earnings of $0.99 per diluted share in the fourth quarter last year.

For the fourth quarter of fiscal 2010, net sales increased 5% to $839.3 million, from $801.2 million in the year ago period. Same store sales for the fourth quarter decreased 3%, compared to a same store sales increase of 9% last year.

Full Fiscal Year Performance

Diluted net earnings for fiscal 2010 were $2.49 per share, including the aforementioned $0.03 per share impact due to a higher than expected effective tax rate and a previously disclosed after tax charge of $0.04 per diluted share resulting from the third quarter retirement plan payment to the Company's Chairman and former Chief Executive Officer. The Company reported net earnings of $2.27 per share in the same period last year.

Net sales for fiscal 2010 increased 8% to $2.400 billion, from $2.230 billion in the year ago period. Same store sales for fiscal 2010 increased 1%, compared to a same store sales increase of 10% last year.

Thomas P. Johnson, Chief Executive Officer, commented, "In 2010 the Aeropostale brand continued to build momentum and popularity, we opened our flagship Times Square store, and we continued the roll-out of our children's concept 'P.S. from Aeropostale.' While we are proud of our many accomplishments, our performance in the back-half was below our expectations. The teen retail environment was highly promotional and we believe that we did not execute to our full potential. Moving into 2011, we recognize our opportunities and are more determined than ever to show the power of the Aeropostale brand."

First Quarter and Full Year 2011 Guidance

For the first quarter of fiscal 2011, the Company expects earnings in the range of $0.35 to $0.38 per share, compared to earnings of $0.48 per share last year. For the full year, the Company expects net earnings in the range of $2.20 to $2.40 per diluted share.

Mr. Johnson, continued, "Our outlook for the first quarter reflects the impact from clearing through holiday inventories, and our outlook for the full year reflects industry wide inflationary pressures. As we look forward into 2011, we recognize that the entire sector faces near term challenges. We are, however, focused on leveraging our flexible promotional business model to navigate through the current environment and delivering on our initiatives to position ourselves for future growth."

E-commerce

Net sales from the Company's e-commerce business for the fourth quarter of fiscal 2010 increased 21% to $77.3 million, from $63.8 million in the year ago period. Net sales from the Company's e-commerce business for fiscal 2010 increased 24% to $160.2 million, from $129.0 million in the year ago period.

Share Repurchase Program

The Company repurchased 10.3 million shares of common stock for $257.5 million during fiscal 2010. As of January 29, 2011 the Company had $245.3 million of remaining buyback availability under the $1.15 billion share repurchase program.

Store Growth and Capital Spending for Fiscal 2011

For fiscal 2011 the Company plans to invest approximately $70.0 million to open approximately 30 Aeropostale stores, approximately 20 P.S. from Aeropostale stores, and remodel approximately 50 stores, in addition to certain information technology investments. This compares to capital expenditures of approximately $100.8 million in fiscal 2010.

Conference Call Information

The Company will be holding a conference call today at 4:15 P.M. EDT to review its fourth quarter results. The broadcast will be available through the 'Investor Relations' link at www.aeropostale.com and www.fulldisclosure.com. To listen to the broadcast your computer must have Windows Media Player installed. If you do not have Windows Media Player go to the latter site prior to the call, where you can download the software for free.

About Aeropostale, Inc.

Aeropostale, Inc. is a mall-based, specialty retailer of casual apparel and accessories, principally targeting 14 to 17 year-old young women and men through its Aeropostale(R) stores and 7 to 12 year-old kids through its P.S. from Aeropostale(TM) stores. The Company provides customers with a focused selection of high-quality, active-oriented, fashion and fashion basic merchandise at compelling values. Aeropostale(R) maintains control over its proprietary brands by designing, sourcing, marketing and selling all of its own merchandise. Aeropostale(R) products can only be purchased in its Aeropostale stores and online at www.aeropostale.com. P.S. from Aeropostale(TM) products can be purchased in P.S. from Aeropostale(TM) stores and online at www.ps4u.com. The Company currently operates 906 Aeropostale stores in 49 states and Puerto Rico, 59 Aeropostale stores in Canada and 47 P.S. from Aeropostale stores in 13 states.

SPECIAL NOTE: THIS PRESS RELEASE AND ORAL STATEMENTS MADE FROM TIME TO TIME BY REPRESENTATIVES OF THE COMPANY CONTAIN CERTAIN "FORWARD-LOOKING STATEMENTS" CONCERNING EXPECTATIONS FOR SALES, STORE OPENINGS, GROSS MARGINS, EXPENSES, STRATEGIC DIRECTION AND EARNINGS. ACTUAL RESULTS MIGHT DIFFER MATERIALLY FROM THOSE PROJECTED IN THE FORWARD-LOOKING STATEMENTS. AMONG THE FACTORS THAT COULD CAUSE ACTUAL RESULTS TO MATERIALLY DIFFER INCLUDE, CHANGES IN THE COMPETITIVE MARKETPLACE, INCLUDING THE INTRODUCTION OF NEW PRODUCTS OR PRICING CHANGES BY OUR COMPETITORS, CHANGES IN THE ECONOMY AND OTHER EVENTS LEADING TO A REDUCTION IN DISCRETIONARY CONSUMER SPENDING; SEASONALITY; RISKS ASSOCIATED WITH CHANGES IN SOCIAL, POLITICAL, ECONOMIC AND OTHER CONDITIONS AND THE POSSIBLE ADVERSE IMPACT OF CHANGES IN IMPORT RESTRICTIONS; RISKS ASSOCIATED WITH UNCERTAINTY RELATING TO THE COMPANY'S ABILITY TO IMPLEMENT ITS GROWTH STRATEGIES, AS WELL AS THE OTHER RISK FACTORS SET FORTH IN THE COMPANY'S FORM 10-K AND QUARTERLY REPORTS ON FORM 10-Q, FILED WITH THE SECURITIES AND EXCHANGE COMMISSION. THE COMPANY UNDERTAKES NO OBLIGATION TO UPDATE OR REVISE ANY FORWARD-LOOKING STATEMENTS TO REFLECT SUBSEQUENT EVENTS OR CIRCUMSTANCES.

Company Contact:

Kenneth Ohashi/VP, Investor & Media Relations

(646) 452-1876 or kohashi@aeropostale.com


Media Contact:

Leigh Parrish, FD

(212) 850-5600


EXHIBIT A

AEROPOSTALE, INC.

CONDENSED CONSOLIDATED BALANCE SHEETS


(in thousands)





January 29,

2011

January 30,

2010




ASSETS



Current Assets:



Cash and cash equivalents

$265,553

$ 346,976

Merchandise inventory

156,596

132,915

Other current assets

47,398

50,126

Total current assets

469,547

530,017




Fixtures, equipment and improvements, net

299,242

251,558




Other assets

17,061

10,734




TOTAL ASSETS

$785,850

$792,309




LIABILITIES AND STOCKHOLDERS' EQUITY



Current Liabilities:



Accounts payable

$ 103,014

$ 90,850

Accrued expenses

113,167

150,990

Total current liabilities

216,181

241,840




Other non-current liabilities

137,032

115,980




Stockholders' equity

432,637

434,489




TOTAL LIABILITIES AND STOCKHOLDERS' EQUITY

$785,850

$792,309



EXHIBIT B

AEROPOSTALE, INC.

CONDENSED CONSOLIDATED STATEMENTS OF INCOME AND

SELECTED STORE DATA


(in thousands, except per share and store data)




13 weeks ended


January 29, 2011

January 30, 2010



% of sales


% of sales






Net sales

$839,331

100.0%

$801,223

100.0%






Cost of sales (including certain buying, occupancy and warehousing expenses)

541,205

64.5

490,575

61.2






Gross profit

298,126

35.5

310,648

38.8






Selling, general and administrative expenses

154,253

18.4

151,498

18.9






Income from operations

143,873

17.1

159,150

19.9






Interest expense

(68)

0.0

(32)

0.0






Income before income taxes

143,805

17.1

159,118

19.9






Income taxes

59,985

7.1

62,554

7.8






Net income

$83,820

10.0%

$96,564

12.1%






Basic earnings per share

$0.96


$1.00







Diluted earnings per share

$0.95


$0.99







Weighted average basic shares

87,461


96,467







Weighted average diluted shares

88,601


97,982







STORE DATA:










Comparable store sales (decrease) increase

(3)%


9%







Stores open at end of period

1,012


952







Total square footage at end of period

3,703,033


3,428,376







Average square footage during period

3,711,795


3,431,716




EXHIBIT C

AEROPOSTALE, INC.

CONDENSED CONSOLIDATED STATEMENTS OF INCOME AND

SELECTED STORE DATA


(in thousands, except per share and store data)




52 weeks ended


January 29, 2011

January 30, 2010



% of sales


% of sales






Net sales

$2,400,434

100.0%

$2,230,105

100.0%






Cost of sales (including certain buying, occupancy and warehousing expenses)

1,514,272

63.1

1,382,958

62.0






Gross profit

886,162

36.9

847,147

38.0






Selling, general and administrative expenses

499,368

20.8

464,462

20.8






Income from operations

386,794

16.1

382,685

17.2






Interest (expense) income

(118)

0.0

121

0.0






Income before income taxes

386,676

16.1

382,806

17.2






Income taxes

155,337

6.5

153,349

6.9






Net income

$231,339

9.6%

$229,457

10.3%






Basic earnings per share

$2.52


$2.30







Diluted earnings per share

$2.49


$2.27







Weighted average basic shares

91,700


99,629







Weighted average diluted shares

92,762


101,025







STORE DATA:










Comparable store sales increase

1%


10%







Average square footage during period

3,568,442


3,358,199



SOURCE Aeropostale, Inc.


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