Ulta Beauty announced financial results for the 13-week period ended May 3, 2014 (first quarter), which compares to the same period ended May 4, 2013. Ulta Beauty delivered strong sales and earnings growth in the first quarter,” said Mary Dillon, Ulta’s CEO. “The team’s accomplishments included improving retail transactions which turned positive, driving continued momentum in our online business, successfully rolling out new brands, completing a smooth conversion of our loyalty program members onto one platform, and managing inventory very well.”
For the first quarter 2014, net sales increased 22.5% to $713.8 million from $582.7 million in the first quarter of fiscal 2013; and comparable store sales (sales for stores open at least 14 months and e-commerce sales) increased 8.7%, compared to an increase of 6.7% in the first quarter of fiscal 2013. Additionally, e-commerce comparable sales grew 72.3%, representing 190 basis points of the total company comparable sales increase of 8.7%.
Also during the first quarter, Ulta opened 21 stores in Georgia, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Florida, Virginia, Indiana, California, Massachusetts, North Carolina, Arkansas, Utah, Kansas, Louisiana and Wisconsin. The company ended the first quarter with 696 stores and square footage of 7,375,270, which represents a 20% increase in square footage compared to the first quarter of fiscal 2013.
For the second quarter of fiscal 2014, Ulta currently expects net sales in the range of $706–717 million, compared to actual net sales of $601.0 million in the second quarter of fiscal 2013. Comparable store sales for the second quarter of 2014 are expected to increase 5–7%. The company reported a comparable store sales increase of 8.4% in the second quarter of 2013.
Ulta also is reiterating its previously announced fiscal 2014 guidance. The company plans to achieve comparable store sales growth of approximately 4–6%, including the impact of the e-commerce business; expand square footage by 15% with the opening of 100 net new stores; increase total sales in the mid-teens percentage range; remodel 12 locations; deliver earnings per share growth in the mid-teens percentage range; incur capital expenditures of approximately $265 million in fiscal 2014, compared to $226 million in fiscal 2013; and generate free cash flow in excess of $100 million.