Kirkland's Reports $26M Loss

Jackson, Tenn. Kirkland's Inc.'s fourth-quarter income plummeted 87%, the home-decor retailer reported Tuesday.

Net income for the 13 weeks ended Feb. 2 was $1.5 million, compared to $11.4 million for the 14 weeks ended Feb. 2, 2007.

As a result of a shift in the retail calendar, fourth-quarter 2008 had 13 weeks, compared to 14 last year, Kirkland's said in a statement.

Net sales for the quarter fell 17% to $138.3 million, down from $167.5 million in the comparable period a year ago.

For the 52-week fiscal year, the company reported a net loss of $25.9 million, compared with a net loss of $100,000 last year.

Net sales for the year totaled $396 million, down 11% from $443.2 million last year. Robert Alderson, Kirkland's CEO, said in a statement that the chain has recently closed underperforming stores, slowed store opening and capital-expenditure plans, and cut overhead costs.

"Despite one of the tougher quarters in recent memory in terms of macroeconomic trends and margin pressures, we were able to hit our targeted inventory level while refocusing our assortments toward fiscal 2008," he said in a statement. "Although we are still early in the process and have work left to do, we are pleased to see some early signs of improvement in the business.”