The retailer's total sales increased 13% for the quarter to $360.8 million, with total same-store sales across its brands down 5%. Urban Outfitters' comps decreased 4%, Anthropologie's dropped 7%, and Free People's increased 4%. Direct-to-consumer sales increased 23%, while Free People Wholesale revenues jumped 29%.
I doubt that these figures are any surprise to anyone who looked at Urban Outfitters' holiday sales data. However, it's worthwhile to note that Urban Outfitters' sales number for the fourth quarter did beat analysts' consensus estimate by $2.8 million.
Urban Outfitters' sales for the year increased 12% to $1.22 billion, and total comps for the year decreased by 6%, compared with an 11% increase the year before.
After acknowledging the continuation of the holiday sales trends, Chairman and President Richard Hayne said in the related press release, "Entering the new year with leaner and fresher inventory relative to last year, we believe we have opportunity to improve both sales and operating margin performance in the first quarter." Not that I'm always so enamored with canned statements in press releases, but when it comes to that one, investors are definitely counting on it.
There's certainly something to be said for a retailer pushing out the merchandise that didn't resonate with customers and having fresh wares available that (hopefully) will sell through at full price. I recently took a look at comments from another retailer, Chico's
I've remained upbeat about Urban Outfitters despite the difficult past year. Given its differentiated brands, I don't think it has too much to fear from retailers such as American Eagle Outfitters
When it comes to "the new," though, we've still got a while to wait; there's not much to see here. Urban Outfitters reports fourth-quarter earnings on March 8. Investors will have much more to contemplate then.
For related Foolishness see the following articles:
- We took a look at Urban Outfitters' presentations to analysts recently.
- We also looked at what Chico's had to say to analysts.
- Here's our take on Urban Outfitters' holiday sales.