Urban Outfitters full-year sales surge on pre-pandemic levels, names new North America president
Urban Outfitters Inc. on Thursday reported a 14.2% uptick in fiscal 2022 net sales for the year ended January 31, compared to pre-pandemic levels in fiscal 2020, driven by double-digit comparable revenue growth during the 12 months.
In its opening earnings release statement, the Philadelphia-based Urban Outfitters Inc said it viewed the comparison of fiscal 2022 results to fiscal 2020 as a more "meaningful measurement of the company’s business performance," and therefore, reported accordingly.
"Due to the material impact of Covid-19 on our business operations in fiscal 2021, including mandated store closures, this release includes a comparison of fiscal 2022 results to fiscal 2020," explained Urban Outfitters, which operates Anthropologie, BHLDN, Free People, FP Movement, Terrain, Urban Outfitters, Nuuly and Menus & Venues brands.
For the twelve-month period, comparable retail sales increased 16%, driven by strong double-digit growth in digital channel sales, partially offset by low double-digit negative retail store sales due to reduced store traffic. Wholesale sales decreased 23% primarily from reducing the Free People Group’s sales to promotional wholesale customers, said the company.
For the fourth quarter, Urban Outfitters said net sales were a record $1.33 billion, increasing 13.9% compared to the three months ended January 31, 2020. Comparable sales increased 14%, driven by strong double-digit growth in digital channel sales, while its retail segment sales jumped 15%, offsetting a 22% slump in its wholesale segments.
By brand, comparable sales increased 49% at the Free People Group, 14% at the Anthropologie Group and 3% at Urban Outfitters.
Coinciding with the earnings update, Urban Outfitters announced the appointment of Francis Pierrel to the role of president of Urban Outfitters' North America region. Pierrel will report directly to Sheila Harrington, global chief executive officer of Urban Outfitters and the Free People Group.
Pierrel comes to the company with extensive omni-channel retailing and wholesale experience, having worked previously as president of stores and e-commerce for Ralph Lauren in North America, as well as holding senior roles in wholesale, retail and ecommerce at Lacoste and Diesel across the U.S. and Europe.
“I am pleased to welcome Francis to our company and the Urban Outfitters brand,” said Richard Hayne, chief executive officer of URBN.
“He is a seasoned omni-channel retail executive with deep experience in managing iconic brands across all channels - e-commerce, stores, and wholesale. We believe his strong leadership will greatly benefit the Urban Outfitters brand."
Most recently, Pierrel served as chief executive officer, Club Monaco.
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