Net sales at Steve Madden increased 5.5 percent to 413.5 million dollars compared to 392 million dollars in the same period of 2014. Gross margin expanded 130 basis points to 36 percent and operating expenses as a percentage of sales were 21.6 percent compared to the same period of 2014.
Commenting on the result, Edward Rosenfeld, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, commented, “We are pleased with our third quarter results, which included an increase in diluted EPS of 13 percent compared to the prior year period. Our retail segment was once again the standout, with a third consecutive quarter of double-digit comparable store sales growth. We also benefited from earnings contributions from the recently acquired Dolce Vita, Blondo and SM Mexico.”
Third quarter segment highlights
Net sales for the wholesale business at Steve Madden were 357 million dollars in the third quarter compared to 343.3 million dollars in the third quarter of 2014. Gross margin in the wholesale business increased to 32.1 percent compared to 31.3 percent in last year’s third quarter due to improvement in the wholesale footwear segment.
Retail net sales in the third quarter were 56.4 million dollars compared to 48.7 million dollars in the third quarter of the prior year. Same store sales increased 11.2 percent for the third quarter and retail gross margin increased to 60.4 percent in the third quarter of 2015 compared to 58.9 percent in the third quarter of 2014.
During the third quarter, the company opened two full price stores in Canada, one full price store in Mexico and one US outlet location. The company ended the quarter with 165 company-operated retail locations, including 120 full price stores, 37 outlets, four Internet stores and four joint venture locations in South Africa.
Expects 6 to 7 percent rise in FY15 net sales
Based on lower-than-anticipated back half sales in its private label footwear business, the company has adjusted its sales outlook for fiscal year 2015. It now expects that net sales will increase 6 percent to 7 percent over net sales in 2014. The company continues to expect diluted EPS for fiscal year 2015 to be in the range of 1.85 dollars to 1.95 dollars.