Sales, revenue drop for J.Crew Group

While sales and revenue have dropped for US fashion retailer J.Crew Group for its first quarter, the company remains optimistic.

For the three months to April 29, its total revenues decreased 6 per cent to US$532 million, while comparable company sales fell 9 per cent, compared to a 7 per cent drop in the first quarter last year.

J.Crew sales fell 11 per cent to $428.5 million while comparable sales decreased 12% following a decrease of 8% in the first quarter last year.

However, Madewell sales jumped 17 per cent to $84.7 million. Comparable sales were up 10 per cent following an increase of 6 per cent in the first quarter last year.

Gross margin was 35.4 per cent, easing from 36.1 per cent, while the operating loss was $153.3 million compared with a $7.3 million profit in the previous first quarter. The operating loss includes pre-tax, non-cash impairment charges of $131.2 million plus a charge of $10.7 million for severance and related costs associated with the company’s workforce reduction in April.

Its net loss was $123.3 million compared to an $8 million loss in the previous first quarter.

“While we are disappointed with our first-quarter earnings, we are optimistic regarding the work we have underway to improve our business,” says chairman/CEO Millard Drexler. “We have a clear vision and action plan in place to meet our customers’ needs.”

He is transitioning his role to chairman with Jim Brett taking over as CEO next month.

The company has 278 J.Crew retail stores, 117 Madewell stores, jcrew.com, jcrewfactory.com, the J.Crew catalog, madewell.com, and 178 factory stores (including 39 J.Crew Mercantile stores).

J.Crew has four stores in Hong Kong.

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