Christopher & Banks Corporation Reports January Same-Store Sales
MINNEAPOLIS, Feb. 6, 2003 -- Christopher & Banks Corporation (NYSE: CBK) today reported total sales for the five-week period ended February 1, 2003 increased 11% to $26.1 million from $23.6 million last year, while January same-store sales declined 9%.
For the year-to-date period, total sales increased 24% to $317.3 million from $256.5 million last year. Same-store sales for the year-to-date period rose 2%. As of February 1, 2003, the Company operated 439 stores compared with 351 stores as of February 2, 2002.
Bill Prange, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, commented, "January same-store sales were affected by general economic weakness as well as by the ongoing highly promotional retail environment. However, we conservatively managed our inventories and, as a result, our average in-store inventory at the end of January was lower than last year. Despite the difficulty in selling full price merchandise, we were able to modestly improve our merchandise margins for the month from last year's level.
"Looking forward, we expect the retail environment will remain difficult. Assuming similar conditions persist into February, we project fourth quarter earnings per diluted share to range between $0.39 and $0.41 compared to earnings of $0.39 per diluted share in last year's fourth quarter."
Mr. Prange, concluded, "Overall, we remain confident in our ability to navigate through the current environment. We continue to invest in our business and have a strong capital position with which to internally fund our growth and pursue our stock repurchase program. As we move forward, we believe the Company is well positioned to benefit from any upturn in external conditions."
Christopher & Banks Corporation is a Minneapolis-based specialty retailer of women's clothing providing exclusive fashions under the Christopher & Banks and C.J. Banks labels. Currently, the Company operates 439 stores in 36 states, located primarily in the northern half of the United States.
This release contains forward-looking statements regarding future performance of the Company. The achievement of such results is subject to certain risks and uncertainties, including changes in economic, market and weather conditions, the effect of consumer tastes and spending habits, the realization of expected economies gained through the use of private label and direct import merchandise, management of growth and other factors outside the Company's control, including factors discussed from time to time in the Company's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on forward-looking statements, which reflect management's analysis only as of the date hereof.
The Company undertakes no obligation to update these forward-looking statements to reflect events or circumstances that may arise after the date hereof.
For more information on Christopher & Banks Corporation, visit our website at http://www.christopherandbanks.com.
Contacts: Christopher & Banks Corporation Bill Prange, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer +1-763-551-5000 FD Morgen-Walke Investors: Cara O'Brien/Athan Dounis Media: Laura Novak/Stephanie Sampiere +1-212-850-5600, for Christopher & Banks Corporation