Ulta Salon, Cosmetics & Fragrance Inc.
) turned up with yet another sturdy sales number for the
seven-week period starting from the week before Thanksgiving
through the end of the week of Christmas. Ulta Salon, which sells
cosmetics, fragrance, haircare and other beauty products, added
market share during this holiday season across all its segments
with skincare and cosmetics topping the list.
Net sales for the holiday period soared 23.2% year over year
to $475.6 million driven by a rise in comparable store sales,
which escalated 7.4% over 12.6% reported in the prior-year
period. Over a two-year holiday period, comparable store sales
The largest beauty retailer that provides a one-stop shop for
prestige, mass and salon products and services in the U.S.
reported strong sales during the Black Friday and Cyber Monday
weekend. While sales dipped in the initial days of December, it
again picked up during Christmas.
We believe, gaining high single digit comp growth was quite an
achievement in the face of waning consumer confidence due to the
uncertainty regarding the fiscal cliff in the U.S., which must
have kept consumers busy and away from discretionary
The company, which operates 550 retail stores in 45 states
continued to introduce exciting merchandising and marketing plans
as well as new product offerings across all categories to attract
customers. A successful loyalty program and extended marketing
reach also went in tandem with value-minded customers during this
Ulta, a Zacks #2 Rank (Buy) stock, is witnessing winning
momentum since the last couple of quarters with an average
earnings surprise of 5.12% in the trailing twelve months period
and hopes to finish the year on a high note.
Ulta Salon, however, reiterated its expectation for the fourth
quarter of fiscal 2012. For the fourth quarter, Ulta expects
earnings per share between 96-98 cents, significantly higher than
73 cents in the year-earlier quarter. Net sales are estimated in
the range of $742-$754 million based on comparable store sales
growth of 5% to 7%. For fiscal 2012, the company projects
earnings per share in the range of $2.64-$2.66.
On the other hand, one of its major competitors
) is reeling under pressure with continued sluggish traffic.
Regis delivered 17 straight quarters of negative same-store
sales. Furthermore, the absence of the 2013 guidance also
indicates lack of visibility in the near term.
REGIS CORP/MN (RGS): Free Stock Analysis
ULTA SALON COSM (ULTA): Free Stock Analysis
To read this article on Zacks.com click here.