Abercrombie Income Jumps 79%

Columbus, Ohio, Teen fashion retailer Abercrombie & Fitch Co.’s third-quarter earnings surged 79% and the company raised its profit guidance for the year. Sales rose 35% to $704.9 million from $520.7 million a year ago, with particularly strong gains in the lower-priced Hollister Co. brand and the abercrombie kids stores. Same-store sales rose 25%.

Abercrombie earned $71.6 million, or 70? a share, for the three months ended Oct. 29 compared with $39.9 million, or 42? a share, in the same period last year, when the company paid nearly $33 million to settle three class-action lawsuits. Excluding a one-time charge from an executive severance package, Abercrombie earned $79.8 million, or 88? per share, in the latest quarter. Analysts had predicted earnings of 80? a share.

“An intense focus on getting it right is exactly why Abercrombie & Fitch is better positioned now than it has ever been,” CEO Mike Jeffries said.

At the end of the quarter, Abercrombie operated 354 signature stores, 297 Hollister Co. stores and six Ruehl stores. The company plans to open 29 additional stores by yearend.