May 28, 2013
Tiffany first-quarter sales rise more than expected
May 28, 2013
Tiffany & Co on Tuesday reported higher-than-expected sales for the first quarter that included Valentine's Day, helped by gains in all regions and promotions around the jeweler's 175th anniversary and "The Great Gatsby' movie tie-in.
Overall revenue rose 9.3 percent to $895.4 million, handily beating Wall Street expectations for $855.1 million, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S. Profit also topped estimates.
Comparable-store sales, excluding stores opened in the last year, rose 8 percent, a marked improvement over the holiday-season quarter, when sales were flat and concerns mounted that anxious shoppers were cutting spending on jewelry.
Last year, Tiffany's results were hurt by signs of a slowdown in China and disappointing sales of its silver jewelry, which attracts more price-sensitive customers but generates more than 25 percent of the high-end retailer's sales.
In China, where Tiffany is pushing expansion, sales growth bolstered a 14 percent gain for the Asia business. In Japan, Tiffany's second biggest market, sales rose 2 percent, and would have been up 20 percent, if not for the impact of yen's depreciation.
In the Americas, sales advanced 6 percent, helped in part by much brisker business at its Fifth Avenue flagship store in Manhattan, where sales fell last year. The store generates about one-twelfth of companywide revenue.
Tiffany also designed jewelry for the Hollywood hit "The Great Gatsby," a tie-in the attracted a lot of attention.
Still, the jeweler kept to its earlier profit forecast, pointing to lingering softness in the Americas and the impact of yen's depreciation.
Tiffany expects annual profit at $3.43 to $3.53 per share.
For the quarter ended April 30, New York-based Tiffany's earnings rose to $83.6 million, or 65 cents per share, from $81.5 million, or 64 cents a share, a year earlier.
Excluding costs associated with a move to new offices last year, Tiffany earned 70 cents a share, while Wall Street expected 52 cents.
Shares were up 5 percent to $80 in light premarket trading.
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