Comparable store sales increase for Bon-Ton in fourth quarter

Freeman Staff

March 12, 2015

MILWAUKEE — Comparable store sales for The Bon-Ton Stores, Inc. increased in the fourth quarter and for the entire fiscal 2014 year, according to a report Thursday.

The retailer said comparable store sales increased 4.3 percent in the fourth quarter compared with the same period in 2013, while they increased 0.2 percent in fiscal 2014 compared with 2013.

Net income in the fourth quarter of fiscal 2014 was $71.7 million, or $3.55 per diluted share, compared with net income of $61.3 million, or $3.04 per diluted share, during the fourth quarter of 2013.

For fiscal 2014, the net loss was $7 million, or $0.36 per diluted share, compared with a prior year net loss of $3.6 million, or $0.19 per diluted share, according to the company.

“We were pleased with our sales performance in the fourth quarter in both stores and eCommerce. However, increased promotional activity in support of our initiative to drive incremental traffic as well as higher delivery expenses associated with our omnichannel operations resulted in a reduced gross margin rate in the fourth quarter,” said Kathryn Bufano, president and chief executive officer, in a statement. “We managed our inventory such that we ended the period in line with our sales trend and well-positioned for spring selling.”

The Bon-Ton Stores, Inc., with corporate headquarters in York, Pa., and Milwaukee operates 270 stores under the Bon-Ton, Bergner’s, Boston Store, Carson’s, Elder-Beerman, Herberger’s and Younkers nameplates.