Mothers Work, Inc. announced that net sales for the month of December 2001 increased 15.5% to $44.4 million from $38.4 million reported for the month of December 2000. Comparable store sales for December 2001 increased 0.3% (based on 727 locations) versus a comparable store sales increase of 0.1% (based on 641 locations) for the December 2000 period. During December 2001, the Company opened one new location. As of December 2001, there were a total of 939 locations compared to 745 at December 2000. Net sales increased 11.5% to $114.3 million for the first quarter of fiscal 2002 ended December 31, 2001, from $102.6 million in the same period of the preceding year. Comparable store sales decreased 2.5% during the first quarter of fiscal 2002 (based on 687 locations) versus a comparable store sales increase of 1.5% during the first quarter of fiscal 2001 (based on 615 locations). The Company opened 19 new locations, acquired the 170-store iMaternity(R) organization and closed 16 locations, including eight iMaternity stores in connection with the consolidation of the recently acquired store chain, ending the quarter with 939 locations compared to 745 at December 2000. Rebecca Matthias, President and Chief Operating Officer of Mothers Work, noted, "We ended the December quarter on a positive note with an upward trend in comparable store sales across all divisions. Our total revenue increased, driven by new stores and our acquisition of iMaternity. Our gross margin rate increased in December over the prior year despite the continuing tough retail environment. We made progress this quarter in assimilating our recent iMaternity acquisition. As a result of improved operating results and improved inventory management, we significantly reduced our bank debt."
Mothers Work is the world's largest designer, manufacturer and retailer of maternity apparel, using its custom TrendTrack(TM) computer systems and quick response replenishment process to "give the customer what she wants, when she wants it." Mothers Work operates 939 maternity locations, including 806 stores and 133 leased departments, predominantly under the tradenames Motherhood Maternity(R), A Pea in the Pod(R), Mimi Maternity(R), iMaternity(R), MotherTime(R), and Dan-Howard(TM) and sells on the web through its www.maternitymall.com and iMaternity.com sites.
The Company cautions that any forward-looking statements (as such term is
defined in the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995) contained in
this press release or made from time to time by management of the Company,
including expected results of operations, involve risks and uncertainties, and
are subject to change based on various important factors. The following
factors, among others, in some cases have affected and in the future could
affect the Company's financial performance and actual results and could cause
actual results to differ materially from those expressed or implied in any
such forward-looking statements: changes in consumer spending patterns,
consumer preferences and overall economic conditions, the impact of
competition and pricing, continued availability of capital and financing,
ability to develop and source merchandise, and other factors set forth in the
Company's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
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