Chico’s FAS, Inc. Reports First Quarter Results

Chico’s FAS, Inc. Reports First Quarter Results

FORT MYERS, Fla., June 6, 2023 /PRNewswire/ —

  • Reported first quarter diluted EPS of $0.32, up 14.3% compared to last year
  • Generated total Company net sales of $535 million, in line with outlook
  • Expanded gross margin by 210 basis points to 42.1%
  • Increased operating margin by 160 basis points to 10.0%
  • Repaid $25 million of debt, repurchased $20 million of stock; ended quarter with $131 million in cash and marketable securities

Chico’s FAS, Inc. (NYSE: CHS) (the “Company” or “Chico’s FAS”) today announced its financial results for the thirteen weeks ended April 29, 2023 (the “first quarter”). The Company also provided its fiscal 2023 second quarter outlook and updated its full-year outlook.

Molly Langenstein, Chico’s FAS Chief Executive Officer and President, commented, “We delivered another quarter of outstanding operating income and EPS performance, underscoring our commitment to our four strategic pillars of customer led, product obsessed, digital first, and operationally excellent.

“Total year-over-year sales were in line with our outlook, down 1.1%, on top of 39.4% growth in the first quarter last year. For the Company as a whole, full-priced sales remained healthy, spend per customer and average unit retail increased year-over-year; and we gained market share across all brands.”

Langenstein continued, “Chico’s, our largest brand, celebrating its 40th anniversary, demonstrated outstanding performance, posting comparable sales growth of 4.9% on top 52.0% last year. We believe Chico’s is positioned for continued outsized growth, as it is the fastest growing apparel brand for customers over 45 with household incomes over $100,000, according to Circana. Chico’s is also expanding its demographic appeal, attracting new customers with an average age 10 years younger than existing customers.

“Soma sales trends continued to improve from prior quarters, while White House Black Market sales declined as we quickly sold through fashion inventories due to strong customer demand.”

“We are confident in our brand strategy and our ability to deliver on our long-term financial targets, as we continue to navigate the current macroeconomic environment. Our three distinct brands each have a clear path to profitable growth, and we are positioned to further enhance our operating performance, strengthen our balance sheet and generate meaningful shareholder value,” concluded Langenstein.

Business Highlights

The Company’s first quarter highlights include:

  • Strong first quarter results: The Company posted $0.32 net income per diluted share for the first quarter, an improvement of 14.3% compared to the first quarter of last year, primarily driven by gross margin expansion of 210 basis points.
  • Compelling two-year stacked comparable sales: For the first quarter, total Chico’s FAS comparable sales decreased 0.6% versus last year’s first quarter. On a two-year stacked basis, comparable sales increased 40.0%, notably exceeding our strategic plan. Chico’s® comparable sales grew 4.9%, versus the first quarter last year. On a sequential basis, Soma’s® comparable sales improved 250 basis points and were down 2.5% versus last year’s first quarter. White House Black Market® (“WHBM”) comparable sales decreased 8.0% versus last year’s strong first quarter increase of 64.8%. All three brands reported higher average unit retail driven by full-price selling.
  • Robust operating income growth: First quarter income from operations was $53.3 million, or 10.0% of net sales, compared to $45.4 million, or 8.4% of net sales, in last year’s first quarter, driven primarily by gross margin expansion.
  • Strong balance sheet: The Company ended the first quarter with $131.0 million in cash and marketable securities, after repaying $25.0 million of long-term debt and repurchasing 3.25 million shares during the quarter for $19.8 million.

Overview of Financial Results

For the first quarter, the Company reported net income of $39.9 million, or $0.32 per diluted share, compared to net income of $34.9 million, or $0.28 per diluted share, for last year’s first quarter.

Sales

The Company reported first quarter net sales of $534.7 million compared to $540.9 million in last year’s first quarter. This decrease of 1.1% primarily reflects a comparable sales decrease of 0.6%, as well as the impact of the net store closures since last year’s first quarter. The 0.6% comparable sales decline was driven by a decrease in transaction count, mostly offset by an increase in average dollar sale.

The following table depicts comparable sales percentages for Chico’s FAS, Chico’s, WHBM® and Soma:


Thirteen Weeks Ended



April 29, 2023


April 30, 2022


Chico’s

4.9 %


52.0 %


White House Black Market

(8.0)


64.8


Soma

(2.5)


(1.4)


Total Company

(0.6)


40.6


Gross Margin

For the first quarter, gross profit was $225.0 million, or 42.1% of net sales, compared to $216.6 million, or 40.0% of net sales, in last year’s first quarter. The 210-basis-point increase in gross margin primarily reflects higher average unit retail, lower inbound freight costs, and corporate expense savings, partially offset by higher raw material and occupancy costs.

Selling, General and Administrative Expenses

For the first quarter, selling, general and administrative expenses (“SG&A”) was $171.7 million, or 32.1% of net sales, compared to $171.2 million, or 31.6% of net sales, for last year’s first quarter. The 50 basis points of deleverage primarily reflects increased marketing and store operating expenses to support our long-term growth strategies, partially offset by disciplined expense management.

Income Taxes

The Company’s first quarter effective tax rate was 24.3% compared to 21.4% for last year’s first quarter. This year’s effective tax rate primarily reflects favorable share-based compensation benefit. Last year’s first quarter effective tax rate primarily reflected favorable share-based compensation benefit and the reduction in the liability for future reversing deferred tax liabilities.

Cash, Marketable Securities and Capital Allocation

At the end of the first quarter, cash and marketable securities totaled $131.0 million compared to $104.1 million at the end of last year’s first quarter.

Long-term debt at the end of the first quarter totaled $24.0 million compared to $99.0 million at the end of last year’s first quarter, reflecting a principal payment of $25.0 million in the first quarter of fiscal year 2023, in addition to the $50.0 million paid in fiscal year 2022.

During the first quarter of fiscal 2023, the Company repurchased 3.25 million shares under its $300.0 million share repurchase program announced in November 2015.

Inventories

At the end of the first quarter, inventories totaled $293.8 million compared to $325.6 million at the end of last year’s first quarter. The decrease of $31.8 million, or 9.8%, was primarily due to normalized supply chain conditions that resulted in significantly lower in-transit inventories.

Fiscal 2023 Second Quarter and Full-Year Outlook

For fiscal 2023 second quarter, the Company currently expects:

  • Consolidated net sales of $545 million to $565 million;
  • Gross margin rate as a percent of net sales of 39.0% to 39.5%;
  • SG&A as a percent of net sales of 30.5% to 31.0%;
  • Effective income tax rate of 28.0% to 29.0%; and
  • Earnings per diluted share of $0.25 to $0.30.

For fiscal 2023, a 53-week year, the Company currently expects:

  • Consolidated net sales of $2,175 million to $2,205 million;
  • Gross margin rate as a percent of net sales of 38.4% to 38.8%;
  • SG&A as a percent of net sales of 32.6% to 33.0%;
  • Effective income tax rate of 26.0%;
  • Earnings per diluted share of $0.70 to $0.82; and
  • Capital and cloud-based expenditures of $80 million to $90 million.

Conference Call Information

The Company is hosting a live conference call on Tuesday, June 6, 2023, beginning at 8:00 a.m. Eastern Time to review the operating results for the first quarter. The conference call is being webcast live over the Internet, which you may access in the Investors section of the Company’s corporate website, www.chicosfas.com. A replay of the webcast will remain available online for one year at http://chicosfas.com/investors/events-and-presentations.

The phone number for the call is 1-877-883-0383. International callers should use 1-412-902-6506. The Elite Entry number, 2200704, is required to join the conference call. Interested participants should call 10-15 minutes prior to the 8:00 a.m. Eastern Time start to be placed in queue.

ABOUT CHICO’S FAS, INC.

Chico’s FAS is a Florida-based fashion company founded in 1983 on Sanibel Island, FL. The Company reinvented the fashion retail experience by creating fashion communities anchored by service, which put the customer at the center of everything we do. As one of the leading fashion retailers in North America, Chico’s FAS is a company of three unique brands – Chico’s®, White House Black Market® and Soma® – each thriving in their own white space, founded by women, led by women, providing solutions that millions of women say give them confidence and joy.

Our Company has a passion for fashion, and each day, we provide clothing, shoes and accessories, intimate apparel and expert styling in our brick-and-mortar boutiques, digital online boutiques and through StyleConnect®, the Company’s customized, branded, digital styling tool that enables customers to conveniently shop wherever, whenever and however they prefer.

As of April 29, 2023, the Company operated 1,262 stores in the U.S. and sold merchandise through 58 international franchise locations in Mexico and through two domestic franchise locations in airports. The Company’s merchandise is also available at www.chicos.com, www.chicosofftherack.com, www.whbm.com and www.soma.com.

To learn more about Chico’s FAS, please visit our corporate website at www.chicosfas.com. The information on our corporate website is not, and shall not be deemed to be, a part of this press release or incorporated into our federal securities law filings.

SAFE HARBOR STATEMENT UNDER THE PRIVATE SECURITIES LITIGATION REFORM ACT OF 1995

This press release contains statements concerning our current expectations, assumptions, plans, estimates, judgments, and projections about our business and our industry, and other statements that are not historical facts. These statements, including, without limitation, the quote from Ms. Langenstein and the sections captioned “Business Highlights” and “Fiscal 2023 Second Quarter and Full-Year Outlook,” are “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. In most cases, words or phrases such as “aim,” “anticipates,” “believes,” “could,” “estimates,” “expects,” “intends,” “target,” “may,” “will,” “plans,” “path,” “outlook,” “project,” “should,” “strategy,” “potential,” “confident,” “assumptions,” and similar expressions identify forward-looking statements. These forward-looking statements are based largely on information currently available to our management and are subject to various risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from historical results or those expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements. Although we believe our expectations are based on reasonable estimates and assumptions, they are not guarantees of performance. There is no assurance that our expectations will occur or that our estimates or assumptions will be correct, and we caution investors and all others not to place undue reliance on such forward-looking statements. Factors that could cause actual results to differ include, but are not limited to, those factors described in Item 1A, “Risk Factors” in our most recent Annual Report on Form 10-K and, from time to time, in Item 1A, “Risk Factors” in our Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q and the following:

the ability of our suppliers, logistics providers, vendors, and landlords, to meet their obligations to us in light of financial stress, labor shortages, liquidity challenges, bankruptcy filings by other industry participants, and supply chain and other disruptions; our ability to sufficiently staff our retail stores; changes in general economic conditions, including, but not limited to, consumer confidence and spending patterns; the impacts of rising inflation, gasoline prices, and interest rates on consumer spending; the availability of, and interest rates on, consumer credit; the impact of consumer debt levels and consumers’ ability to meet credit obligations; market disruptions, including pandemics or significant health hazards, severe weather conditions, natural disasters, terrorist activities, financial crises, adverse developments affecting the financial services industry, political and social crises, war and other military conflicts (such as the war in Ukraine) or other major events, or the prospect of these events (including their impact on consumer spending, inflation, and the global supply chain); shifts in consumer behavior, and our ability to adapt, identify, and respond to new and changing fashion trends and customer preferences, and to coordinate product development with buying and planning; changes in the general or specialty retail or apparel industries, including significant decreases in market demand and the overall level of spending for women’s private branded clothing and related accessories; our ability to secure and maintain customer acceptance of in-store and online concepts and styles; our ability to maintain strong relationships with our vendors, manufacturers, licensors, and retail customers; increased competition in the markets in which we operate, including for, among other things, premium mall space; our ability to remain competitive with customer shipping terms and costs; decreases in customer traffic at malls, shopping centers, and our stores; fluctuations in foreign currency exchange rates and commodity prices; significant increases in the costs of manufacturing, raw materials, transportation, importing, distribution, labor, and advertising; decreases in the quality of merchandise received from suppliers and increases in delivery times for receiving such merchandise; our ability to appropriately manage our store fleet, and our ability to achieve the expected results of any store openings or store closings; our ability to appropriately manage inventory and allocation processes and leverage targeted promotions; our ability to maintain cost-saving discipline; our ability to generate sufficient cash flow; our ability to operate our retail websites in a profitable manner; our ability to successfully identify and implement additional sales and distribution channels; our ability to successfully execute and achieve the expected results of our business, brand strategies, brand awareness programs, and merchandising and marketing programs including, but not limited to, the Company’s three-year strategic growth plan, sales initiatives, multi-channel strategies, and four strategic pillars, which are (1) customer led, (2) product obsessed, (3) digital first, and (4) operationally excellent; our ability to utilize our Fort Myers campus, distribution center, and other support facilities in an efficient and effective manner; our reliance on sourcing from foreign suppliers; significant adverse economic, labor, political, or other shifts (including adverse changes in tariffs, taxes, or other import regulations, particularly with respect to China or Vietnam, or legislation prohibiting certain imports from China or Vietnam); U.S. and foreign governmental actions and policies, and changes thereto; the continuing performance, implementation, and integration of our management information systems; our ability to successfully update and maintain our information systems; the impact of any system failure, cybersecurity, or other data security breaches, including any security breaches resulting in the theft, transfer, or unauthorized disclosure of customer, employee, or company information that we or our third-party vendors may experience; the risks that our share repurchase program may not successfully enhance shareholder value, or that share repurchases could be negatively perceived by investors; our ability to comply with applicable domestic and foreign information security and privacy laws, regulations, and technology platform rules or other obligations related to data privacy and security; our ability to attract, hire, train, motivate, and retain qualified employees in an inclusive environment; our ability to successfully recruit leadership or transition members of our senior management team; increased public focus and opinion on environmental, social, and governance (“ESG”) initiatives and our ability to meet any announced ESG goals and initiatives; future unsolicited offers to buy the Company and actions of activist shareholders and others, and our ability to respond effectively; our ability to secure and protect our trademark and other intellectual property rights; our ability to protect our reputation and our brand images; unanticipated obligations or changes in estimates arising from new or existing litigation, income taxes, and other regulatory proceedings; unanticipated adverse changes in legal, regulatory, or tax laws; and our ability to comply with the terms of our credit agreement, including the restrictive provisions limiting our flexibility in operating our business and obtaining additional credit on commercially reasonable terms.

These factors should be considered in evaluating forward-looking statements contained herein. All forward-looking statements that are made, or are attributable to us, are expressly qualified in their entirety by this cautionary notice. The forward-looking statements included herein are only made as of the date of this press release. We undertake no obligation to publicly update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events, or otherwise.

Investor Relations Contact:

Julie MacMedan
Chico’s FAS, Inc.
(239) 346-4384
[email protected]

Chico’s FAS, Inc. • 11215 Metro Parkway • Fort Myers, Florida 33966 • (239) 277-6200

Chico’s FAS, Inc. and Subsidiaries

Condensed Consolidated Statements of Income

(Unaudited)

(in thousands, except per share amounts)



Thirteen Weeks Ended


April 29, 2023


April 30, 2022


Amount


% of

Sales


Amount


% of

Sales

Net Sales:








Chico’s

$    273,650


51.2 %


$    264,466


48.9 %

White House Black Market

153,470


28.7


169,029


31.2

Soma

107,623


20.1


107,420


19.9

Total Net Sales

534,743


100.0


540,915


100.0

Cost of goods sold

309,734


57.9


324,350


60.0

Gross Margin

225,009


42.1


216,565


40.0

Selling, general and administrative expenses

171,673


32.1


171,158


31.6

Income from Operations

53,336


10.0


45,407


8.4

Interest expense, net

(630)


(0.1)


(975)


(0.2)

Income before Income Taxes

52,706


9.9


44,432


8.2

Income tax provision

12,800


2.4


9,500


1.7

Net Income

$      39,906


7.5 %


$      34,932


6.5 %

Per Share Data:








Net income per common share – basic

$           0.33




$           0.29



Net income per common and common equivalent share – diluted

$           0.32




$           0.28



Weighted average common shares outstanding – basic

119,702




118,993



Weighted average common and common equivalent shares outstanding –
diluted

123,375




123,311



Chico’s FAS, Inc. and Subsidiaries

Condensed Consolidated Balance Sheets

(Unaudited)

(in thousands)



April 29, 2023


January 28, 2023


April 30, 2022

ASSETS






Current Assets:






Cash and cash equivalents

$                 107,734


$                 153,377


$                 104,131

Marketable securities, at fair value

23,314


24,677


Inventories

293,776


276,840


325,565

Prepaid expenses and other current assets

42,766


48,604


53,024

Income taxes receivable

9,202


11,865


12,737

Total Current Assets

476,792


515,363


495,457

Property and Equipment, net

191,153


192,165


184,240

Right of Use Assets

457,695


435,321


439,896

Other Assets:






Goodwill

16,360


16,360


16,360

Other intangible assets, net

5,000


5,000


5,000

Other assets, net

27,078


23,632


19,648

Total Other Assets

48,438


44,992


41,008


$              1,174,078


$              1,187,841


$              1,160,601







LIABILITIES AND SHAREHOLDERS’ EQUITY






Current Liabilities:






Accounts payable

$                 136,903


$                 156,262


$                 161,058

Current lease liabilities

156,494


153,202


150,476

Other current and deferred liabilities

135,562


141,698


139,148

Total Current Liabilities

428,959


451,162


450,682

Noncurrent Liabilities:






Long-term debt

24,000


49,000


99,000

Long-term lease liabilities

365,422


349,409


355,851

Other noncurrent and deferred liabilities

2,866


2,637


2,290

Total Noncurrent Liabilities

392,288


401,046


457,141

Commitments and Contingencies






Shareholders’ Equity:






Preferred stock



Common stock

1,234


1,250


1,251

Additional paid-in capital

510,958


513,914


504,977

Treasury stock, at cost

(514,168)


(494,395)


(494,395)

Retained earnings

354,928


315,022


240,945

Accumulated other comprehensive loss

(121)


(158)


Total Shareholders’ Equity

352,831


335,633


252,778


$              1,174,078


$              1,187,841


$              1,160,601

Chico’s FAS, Inc. and Subsidiaries

Condensed Consolidated Cash Flow Statements

(Unaudited)

(in thousands)



Thirteen Weeks Ended


April 29, 2023


April 30, 2022

Cash Flows from Operating Activities:




Net income

$                          39,906


$                          34,932

Adjustments to reconcile net income to net cash provided by (used in) operating activities:




Depreciation and amortization

9,940


11,590

Non-cash lease expense

46,058


44,131

Loss on disposal and impairment of property and equipment, net

30


1,968

Deferred tax benefit

132


(430)

Share-based compensation expense

3,119


3,863

Changes in assets and liabilities:




Inventories

(16,936)


(2,176)

Prepaid expenses and other assets

2,183


(6,449)

Income tax receivable

2,663


961

Accounts payable

(19,359)


(19,483)

Accrued and other liabilities

(6,865)


(1,182)

Lease liability

(49,230)


(67,908)

Net cash provided by (used in) operating activities

11,641


(183)

Cash Flows from Investing Activities:




Purchases of marketable securities

(271)


Proceeds from sale of marketable securities

1,640


Purchases of property and equipment

(7,789)


(2,571)

Net cash used in investing activities

(6,420)


(2,571)

Cash Flows from Financing Activities:




Payments on borrowings

(25,000)


Payments of debt issuance costs


(706)

Proceeds from issuance of common stock

120


143

Repurchase of treasury stock under repurchase program

(19,805)


Payments of tax withholdings related to share-based awards

(6,179)


(7,657)

Net cash used in financing activities

(50,864)


(8,220)

Net decrease in cash and cash equivalents

(45,643)


(10,974)

Cash and Cash Equivalents, Beginning of period

153,377


115,105

Cash and Cash Equivalents, End of period

$                        107,734


$                        104,131

Supplemental Detail on Net Income per Common Share Calculation

In accordance with accounting guidance, unvested share-based payment awards that include non-forfeitable rights to dividends, whether paid or unpaid, are considered participating securities. As a result, such awards are required to be included in the calculation of income per common share pursuant to the “two-class” method. For the Company, participating securities are comprised entirely of unvested restricted stock awards granted prior to fiscal 2020.

Net income per share is determined using the two-class method when it is more dilutive than the treasury stock method. Basic net income per share is computed by dividing net income available to common shareholders by the weighted-average number of common shares outstanding during the period, including participating securities. Diluted net income per share reflects the dilutive effect of potential common shares from non-participating securities such as restricted stock awards granted after fiscal 2019, stock options, PSUs and restricted stock units. For the thirteen weeks ended April 29, 2023 and April 30, 2022, potential common shares were excluded from the computation of diluted income per common share to the extent they were antidilutive.

The following unaudited table sets forth the computation of net income per basic and diluted common share shown on the face of the accompanying condensed consolidated statements of income (in thousands, except per share amounts):         



Thirteen Weeks Ended



April 29, 2023


April 30, 2022

Numerator:





Net income


$                   39,906


$                   34,932

Net income allocated to participating securities


(58)


(178)

Net income available to common shareholders


$                   39,848


$                   34,754






Denominator:





Weighted average common shares outstanding – basic


119,702


118,993

Dilutive effect of non-participating securities


3,673


4,318

Weighted average common and common equivalent shares outstanding –
diluted


123,375


123,311






Net income per common share:





Basic


$                        0.33


$                        0.29

Diluted


$                        0.32


$                        0.28

Chico’s FAS, Inc. and Subsidiaries

Store Count and Square Footage

Thirteen Weeks Ended April 29, 2023

(Unaudited)












January 28, 2023


New Stores


Closures


April 29, 2023



Store Count:










Chico’s frontline boutiques

488



(2)


486



Chico’s outlets

121



(1)


120



WHBM frontline boutiques

328



(4)


324



WHBM outlets

53




53



Soma frontline boutiques

259




259



Soma outlets

20




20



Total Chico’s FAS, Inc.

1,269



(7)


1,262
























January 28, 2023


New Stores


Closures


Other Changes in SSF


April 29, 2023

Net Selling Square Footage (SSF):










Chico’s frontline boutiques

1,326,251



(4,809)


1,902


1,323,344

Chico’s outlets

304,487



(2,840)



301,647

WHBM frontline boutiques

767,063



(9,989)


1,588


758,662

WHBM outlets

110,394





110,394

Soma frontline boutiques

476,669




1,596


478,265

Soma outlets

37,539





37,539

Total Chico’s FAS, Inc.

3,022,403



(17,638)


5,086


3,009,851

As of April 29, 2023, the Company’s franchise operations consisted of 58 international retail locations in Mexico and two domestic locations in airports.

SOURCE Chico’s FAS, Inc.

Originally published at https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/chicos-fas-inc-reports-first-quarter-results-301843013.html
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