IRVING, Texas-A gain in sales and controlled expenses helped Michaels Stores to a 21.7 percent increase in first-quarter net income, which totaled $56 million.
In the quarter, which ended on May 3, net sales were up 5.9 percent to $1.1 billion, including a pickup of 3.8 percent in same-store sales. Selling, general and administrative expenses edged up 3.7 percent in dollars but fell 58 basis points as a percentage of sales, to 26.8 percent.
In addition, Michaels shaved 12.8 percent from interest expense. Gross margin dropped 41 basis points to 40.8 percent.
Over the past 12 months, the company operated 27 net new Michaels and Aaron Brothers stores. Michaels now operates 1,262 stores, 1,144 of which are Michaels and 118 of which are Aaron Brothers.