(Filed Under wholesale Lingerie News). Soma’s net sales rose 4.7% to $83.5 million in the third quarter ended October 31, up from $79.8 million in the same period last year.
Digital sales in all divisions of parent company Chico’s FAS rose sharply and “Soma led the way with 67% growth compared to the thirteen weeks ended November 2, 2019.”
Chico’s FAS as a whole, however, lost $55.9 million on sales of $351.4 million, compared to a loss of $8.1 million on sales of $484.7 million in the same thirteen weeks last year. In addition to Soma, the company sells other apparel under the Chico’s and White House Black Market brands.
In the Chico’s FAS conference call with analysts to discuss the quarter, CEO Molly Langenstein emphasized, perhaps overly so, the prominence of the digital portion of the company, going so far as to describe her entire firm, (which currently operates 1,310 brick and mortar stores in the U.S. and has 68 international franchise locations in Mexico) “as a digital-first company.”
She continued, “for the third quarter, year-over-year digital customer count grew nearly 27% and conversion was up 170 basis points. Soma is a true success story. Soma is now a digital-first business supported by boutiques throughout the country. We believe we can replicate the learnings and success of Soma to our apparel brands.”
Between August 1 and October 31, Soma closed only one of its “frontline” boutiques, reducing the total to 241, while keeping the number of Soma outlets constant at 18.
Langenstein spoke about product developments at Soma, explaining “we are innovating and creating the most incredibly soft and functional fabrics and products that are offering our customers beautiful solutions, style and comfort that are synonymous with the brand. Continual product newness and investments in pajamas and the intimate franchises are expanding market share and driving results.”
She concluded, “in terms of the assortments for holiday and how we’re thinking about the gifting. Number one, the gift assortments are actually bigger than last year in White House in particular. In Chico’s, a little bit bigger, and in Soma, it is actually quite a bit bigger, based upon how we thought through gifting and what we think the customer will be giving in this time period.” — NM
The full transcript of the conference call can be found here: https://seekingalpha.com/article/4391278-chicos-fas-inc-chs-ceo-molly-langenstein-on-q3-2020-results-earnings-call-transcript
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