NEW YORK – Syms Corp. experienced robust gains in fourth-quarter and full-year profits despite modest sales gains in the two periods.
For the three months ended March 3, net income hit $3.2 million or $0.22 a share, 32.2% above the $2.4 million, or $0.16, reported during the prior-year period.
Net sales for the more recent 14-week period increased 3.6% to $79.5 million from $76.8 million during the 13-week year-earlier quarter. Same-store sales rose 4.8% during the quarter. The company estimated that the extra week of selling in the more recent period added $3.6 million in net sales, a figure greater than its $2.7 million quarterly sales increase as well as the $789,000 advance in annual sales.
Gross margin rose to 40.4% of sales from 39.6% in the comparable 2005 period.
For the year, net income was nearly 2.8 times the prior-year level, bounding to $9.5 million, or $0.66 a share, from $3.4 million, or $0.23, in 2005. However, the more recent year benefited from a $10.4 million pre-tax gain from the sale of real estate in Dallas, Texas, and Rochester, NY. The company didn’t provide an after-tax figure for the real-estate benefit.
Sales for the year rose 0.3% to $281.2 million from $280.4 million in 2005. Same-store sales rose 1.2%. Gross margin was flat at 40.3% of sales in both periods.
Syms operates 34 off-price apparel stores in the eastern part of the US. Its Dallas stores has been replaced by a leased location in Plano, Texas.