(Filed Under wholesale Lingerie News). Soma sales jumped to $106,893,000 in the quarter ended May 1, up 65% from $64,907,000 in the same period last year, and up 33% from 2019, when it reported sales of $80,081,000 in the first quarter.
Boasted Molly Langenstein, CEO of parent company Chico’s FAS, during the earnings call, “these powerful results give us confidence that Soma will continue to take a meaningful share of the U.S. intimate apparel market and explode into a billion-dollar brand by 2025.”
Chico’s FAS also revealed that 47 new Soma “shop-in-shops” will be open inside some of its Chico’s stores by mid-June 2021, noting that the pace of openings is “exceeding expectations.” In March it had been announced that 50 such shops would be open by the end of the year.
“These shop-in-shops are exceeding plan, driving brand awareness, and generating both store and digital sales in markets where Soma is not represented,” said Langenstein.
Between January 30 and May 1of 2021, one Soma free standing boutique was closed, dropping the total to 240. There are also 18 Soma outlets. The many Soma “shop-in-shops” located inside Chico’s stores are counted separately and in addition.
Chico’s FAS relayed that, according to NPD, “for the 12 months ended April 2021, Soma’s growth exceeded that of the U.S. apparel market, was in the top ten brands for non-sport bras and panties, and was in the top five brands in the sleepwear market.”
Despite the strength of Soma, Chico’s FAS itself, which also includes White House Black Market, recorded a company-wide loss of $8,929,000 on sales of $387,961,000 in the quarter.
And on June 7, an activist investor, Barington Capital, sent a note (see separate article) to the company pointing out that Soma’s value was severely impacted by the poor performance of its other divisions. It urged a variety of moves to improve shareholder value. The letter implied that one such move could be separating Soma from the other brands. — NM
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