Financial Reports: Neiman Marcus, Harry & David

Direct Sales Up Slightly for Neiman Marcus
Direct marketing sales for luxury goods merchant Neiman Marcus Group, which mails the Neiman Marcus and Horchow apparel and home decor catalogs, increased 3.4%, to nearly $170.7 million for the fourth quarter ended Aug. 2. In addition to the flagship retail chain, the company owns New York’s high-end Bergdorf Goodman store.

Total company revenue for the fourth quarter increased nearly 5%, to $1.03 billion, up from $981.7 million in the fourth quarter last year. Same-store sales decreased 1.4%. Net loss for the quarter was $35.6 million, compared with a net loss of $15.8 million last year.

For fiscal year 2008, Neiman’s direct marketing sales rose 4.4%, to $747.5 million from $715.5 million. Total sales for the year increased 4.5%, to $4.6 billion up from $4.4 billion. Same-store sales increased 1.7% and net income jumped 22%, to $142.8 million, up from $111.9 million.

Weak Quarter, Fiscal Year for Harry & David
Harry & David Holdings endured a challenging fiscal 2008. Fourth-quarter net sales at the food gifts mailer decreased nearly 9%, to $57.3 million, down from $62.9 million for the 13 weeks ended June 28.

Officials for the Medford, OR-based merchant attributed the decrease to lower direct marketing and store sales, along with the timing of Easter, which fell in the third quarter this year compared to the fourth quarter last year.

Worse, the company’s fourth-quarter net loss more than tripled, to $24.4 million, compared to a net loss of $7.8 million in the same period last year.

For the fiscal year ended June 28, net sales slipped 2.8%, to $545.1 million, down from $561.0 million. Net income sank to $4.6 million, down from $32.0 million in fiscal 2007. Direct marketing sales decreased 3.1%, to $372.6 million, from $384.4 million last year.

“Throughout fiscal 2008, we faced increasingly challenging economic conditions and lower consumer confidence, which contributed to a decline in sales,” CEO Bill Williams said in a release.

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