Gottschalks 3Q impacted by Lamonts
Playthings Staff -- Gifts & Dec, December 7, 2000
FRESNO, CA - Picking up the tab to overhaul and reopen the 34 Lamonts Apparel Stores it bought earlier this year, Gottschalks Inc. posted a $2.4 million third-quarter loss, compared with a year-before profit of $358,000.
But getting a big lift from the newly reopened Lamonts units, sales shot up by 24.7 percent, to $153.2 million from $122.9 million last year. Same-store sales advanced by 2.8 percent, while year-to-date comps moved up a hefty 5.8 percent.
Putting a dent in the bottom line was $4.9 million in pre-opening costs, virtually all of it going to reopen the stores acquired in July. Costs include employee payroll, rent and other operating costs from the July 24 buyout through the actual re-openings.
"Our third-quarter results are on target with our post-acquisition operating plan," said Jim Famalette, president and ceo.
With its core business still showing improvement, average gross margin improved by 140 basis points, to 37.2 percent from 35.8 percent a year ago. According to Famalette, they were lifted by "increased buying power in the marketplace as a result of large volume purchases for the opening of our new Pacific Northwest stores."
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