First-Quarter Profit Jumps 62 Percent for Williams-Sonoma



SAN FRANCISCO-Fueled by revenue growth in both its retail and direct-to-consumer segments, Williams-Sonoma enjoyed a powerful 62 percent increase in first-quarter net income, to $31.6 million.

Total net revenues in the quarter, which ended May 1, rose 7.4 percent to $770.8 million. The gain included a companywide increase of 9 percent in comparable-brand sales (a figure that encompasses same-store sales and total direct-to-consumer net revenues). The biggest comparable-brand gains came from West Elm at 31.1 percent, and Pottery Barn Kids at 10.9 percent. Williams-Sonoma also posted a net-revenue increase of 21 percent from its e-commerce sector.

Laura Alber, president and CEO, said Williams-Sonoma continues to view e-commerce, West Elm and growing internationally as key elements in its growth strategy. Alber added that “despite ongoing softness in the home-furnishings category overall, we are continuing to gain market share.”

The revenue gain helped improve the company’s gross margin by 70 basis points to 38.4 percent. Selling, general and administrative expenses increased 2.6 percent in dollars but lowered 50 basis points as a percentage of sales, to 31.7 percent.

Williams-Sonoma said it expects total revenue growth of 4 percent to 6 percent for the fiscal year as a whole. Increasing its international presence, West Elm’s reach and e-commerce will continue to be strategic priorities for the company, Alber said.

Posted in News, Retail.

Last updated: May 19, 2011