Specialty apparel retailer The Children’s Place, Inc. (PLCE) reported Thursday that net income for the third quarter plunged to $13.3 million or $0.91 per share from $43.0 million or $2.77 per share in the prior-year quarter. Excluding items, adjusted net income was $1.44 per share, compared to $3.03 per share last year.
On average, nine analysts polled by Thomson Reuters expected the company to report earnings of $0.36 per share for the quarter. Analysts’ estimates typically exclude special items.
Net sales for the quarter decreased 19 percent to $425.6 million, primarily as a result of a decrease in back-to-school sales due to schools adopting remote and hybrid learning models, along with the impact of permanent and temporary store closures. Analysts expected revenue of $392.13 million for the quarter.
“While we continue to manage through these short-term headwinds during this extraordinary time, our focus remains on successfully scaling our digital transformation investments and accelerating store closures to position the Company for accelerated operating margin expansion in a post-COVID environment,” Said Jane Elfers, President and CEO.
With the flexibility provided by lease actions, the company remains on track to close 300 stores by the end of fiscal 2021, with a plan of 200 store closures in fiscal 2020, inclusive of the 118 stores that have permanently closed in the first nine months of 2020, and 100 store closures in fiscal 2021.
Looking ahead to fiscal 2020, the Company is still not providing financial guidance at this time as a result of the continued uncertainty created by the COVID-19 pandemic.
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