(Filed Under wholesale Lingerie News). March Victoria’s Secret and Pink comparable store sales in the U.S. and Canada were up 9% over the same month last year, while Victoria’s Secret Direct sales fell 2% during the same period.
“The increase in comps was partially driven by the shift of the Easter holiday into March this year from April last year,” explained Amie Preston, chief investor relations officer. The decline at Victoria’s Secret Direct resulted as “high-teens growth in core categories was more than offset by the exit of apparel.”
Preston added that at the lingerie stores, “the merchandise margin rate was up to last year,” and that at Victoria’s Secret Direct, “the merchandise margin rate was up significantly to last year, driven by the mix into core merchandise categories.”
At the lingerie stores, Preston continued, in remarks that accompanied the sales release, “March began with a focus on our sexiest push-ups floorset with Pink focusing on spring break. Mid-month, we transitioned to our new and improved fabulous collection which will continue in April. April mid-month, we will transition to our Dream Angels collection.”
Parent company L Brands, Inc., which also includes La Senza lingerie, Bath & Body Works and Henri Bendel “reported net sales increased 6% to $981.2 million for the five weeks ended April 4, 2015, compared to net sales of $923.7 million for the five weeks ended April 5, 2014.”
Comparable store sales for all the company stores, for “the five weeks ended April 4, 2015, increased 9% and were positively impacted by the earlier Easter this year by approximately 3 to 4 points.”
In addition, L Brands “reported net sales of $1.787 billion for the nine weeks ended April 4, 2015, an increase of 7% compared to sales of $1.674 billion for the nine weeks ended April 5, 2014. Comparable store sales for the nine weeks ended April 4, 2015, increased 7%.”
Preston closed her remarks about the March sales warning that “the earlier Easter this year positively impacted March comps and will negatively impact April comps by about 5 points. Therefore we expect April comps to be flat to down low-single digits.”
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