TO $448 MILLION; 1994 EARNINGS PER SHARE INCREASED 16 PERCENT TO $1.25; FOURTH QUARTER NET INCOME UP 31 PERCENT; FALL SEASON SETS RECORDS FOR SALES AND NET INCOME; 1995 PLAN FOR 430 NEW STORES TOPS 1994 OPENINGS BY 20 PERCENT COLUMBUS, Ohio, Feb. 14 /PRNewswire/ -- The Limited, Inc. (NYSE: LTD; London) reported a 15% increase in net income to $448.3 million for the 52-week fiscal year ended January 28, 1995, on net sales of $7.321 billion, or a 6.1% after-tax return. Earnings per share increased 16% to $1.25, compared to $1.08 last year. Net sales for the fourth quarter grew to $2.539 billion, an increase of 5% from $2.421 billion a year ago. Net income increased 31% to $256.7 million, compared to $196.3 million last year, and earnings per share increased 33%, from $0.54 to $0.72. Fall season sales of $4.254 billion and net income of $347.2 million both set new Company records. Leslie H. Wexner, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, said, "In 1994, we delivered solid results and made significant progress on the two principal objectives for the year. "First, we set as an objective and, in fact, achieved the goal of restoring merchandise margin integrity at our women's fashion apparel businesses, thereby increasing their operating income contribution as a percentage of sales. Merchandise margin is the key indicator by which we are measuring our progress in returning these businesses to their historic levels of productivity and profitability. "Going forward, Michael Weiss, who has operational responsibility for our women's category, and I will continue to work with the divisional leadership on improving quality, consistency of fit, fashion direction for the customers of each business and, most importantly, on leveraging the sales and earnings potential inherent in these brands. "Our progress in the women's category is best demonstrated by the associates at Express who delivered a significant increase in merchandise margin rate during the fourth quarter and their almost best-ever Fall season in their history. Jill Dean and her team at Lane Bryant also had a solid year, producing a moderate increase in sales with improved margins." Mr. Wexner continued, "I am very proud of our success at reaching our second objective in 1994, which was to continue to profitably grow our lingerie, men's, personal care and children's businesses. These divisions increased their total sales by 28%, contributed 41% of total sales and approximately 55% of operating income. This outstanding performance resulted in a strengthened group of businesses and brands that possess considerable opportunities for continued growth. Overall, every successful business demonstrated an ability to stay very close to its customers. "The associates of Victoria's Secret Stores, under the leadership of Grace Nichols, set new fourth quarter and year-long records in operating income dollars for the division, on an increase in sales of almost $200 million for the year. "Michael Jeffries and the Abercrombie & Fitch associates set new records for margin rate and profitability for the fourth quarter and year, increasing their earnings contribution over last year. David Mangini and his team at Structure produced a 20% increase in earnings for the year in spite of a disappointing fourth quarter. "Bath & Body Works, under the leadership of Beth Pritchard, produced another stellar year, more than doubling their sales while setting new records for the fourth quarter and year for merchandise margin and operating profit rate. The global potential for the brand was demonstrated by the successful opening of five stores in the U.K. in partnership with Next plc." In 1995, The Limited, Inc. plans to open about 430 stores, a 20% increase from the 358 stores opened in 1994. The Company also plans to remodel approximately 180 stores, and add on a net basis 1.5 million square feet of new retail selling space, versus the 1.2 million square feet added in 1994. The Limited, Inc., through Express, Lerner New York, Limited Stores, Victoria's Secret, Lane Bryant, Structure, Limited Too, Bath & Body Works, Abercrombie & Fitch, Henri Bendel, Cacique, and Penhaligon's, presently operates 4,867 specialty stores and distributes apparel nationally through the Victoria's Secret Catalogue. -0- 2/14/95 /CONTACT: Alfred S. Dietzel of The Limited, Inc., 614-479-7070/ /FIRST AND FINAL ADD -- TABULAR MATERIAL -- TO FOLLOW/ (LTD) CO: Limited, Inc. ST: Ohio IN: REA SU: ERN KR-SM -- CL014 -- 7432 02/14/95 08:43 EST EOS (PRN) Feb/14/95 08:43 86 â -0- (PRN) Feb/14/95 8:58
THE LIMITED, INC. REPORTS 15 PERCENT INCREASE IN 1994 NET INCOME
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