American high street brand Express announced its net sales increased 6% to $496.0 million from $467.4 million in the first quarter of 2011. Express Chief Executive Officer Michael Weiss commented: "We had a solid start to the year, reporting a double digit increase in earnings per diluted share while making steady progress toward our long-term goals. The first quarter included the roll out of our new loyalty program, Express NEXT, to all stores in the United States and the opening of four new stores in our new design format."
Weiss further stated: "We entered into a multi-country international franchise arrangement, marking our entry into Latin America. Net sales grew by 6%, with comparable sales rising 4%, including a double digit increase in e-commerce sales. Express is a specialty apparel and accessories retailer of women's and men's collections, targeting the 20 to 30 year old customer. The Company currently operates over 600 retail stores, located primarily in high-traffic shopping malls, lifestyle centers, and street locations across the United States, Canada, and Puerto Rico.