Urban Outfitters reports record Q1 sales of $927 million
Philadelphia-based lifestyle retailer Urban Outfitters, Inc. (URBN) achieved a “record” $927.4 million in total net sales in the first quarter ended April 30, 2021, representing an increase of 57.6% from $588.5 million in the prior-year period, as well as a rise of 7.3% compared to the same period two years ago, when sales totaled $864.4 million.
In light of the considerable negative impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on the company’s results in the previous year’s first quarter, URBN has provided comparable information for the first quarters of the last two years, highlighting that it believes comparisons drawn between its latest results and those achieved in the first quarter ended April 30, 2019, to be a “more meaningful measurement” of its performance.
URBN’s Q1 comparable retail segment sales rose 10% compared to the same period two years ago, thanks largely to double-digit growth in the company’s digital channel. Broken down by brand, the retailer’ comparable sales rose 44% at the Free People Group, 9% at its flagship Urban Outfitters brand and 1% at the Anthropologie Group.
Total retail segment sales rose 10%, while wholesale revenues declined 24%, a result of efforts to realign Free People with a reemphasized focus on regular price selling.
Year over year, URBN’s quarterly comparable retail segment sales rose 51% compared to the prior-year period, heavily affected by the coronavirus crisis. Comparable retail segment sales increased 77% at the Free People Group, 50% at the Anthropologie Group and 42% at Urban Outfitters. Total retail segment sales at the company increased 53%, while wholesale revenues shot up 196%.
URBN’s quarterly net income totaled $53.5 million, or $0.54 per diluted share, up from a loss of $138.4 million, or $1.41 per diluted share, in the prior-year period. Two years ago, the retailer’s first quarter income was $32.6 million, or $0.31 per diluted share.
“The first quarter was one for the record books; record sales, a record low markdown rate, and record earnings per share,” commented URBN CEO Richard A. Hayne in a release. “Strong ‘comps’ were driven by powerful demand and superb execution by all teams. In May, sales trends have accelerated further which we believe bodes well for second quarter results.”
Over the course of the latest fourth quarter, URBN opened six new locations and closed three. The company currently operates some 650 stores in the U.S., Canada and Europe.
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