Dillard’s, Inc. finished its fourth quarter on a strong note, but its annual profits slumped from the previous year.
The Little Rock-based mall merchandiser reported fourth quarter revenue of $2.15 billion and net income of $161.4 million. That was an improvement from the previous year’s fourth quarter when the company posted profits of $141.5 million on revenue of $2.01 billion. The company said it gained an extra week of sales due to calendar timing in its fourth quarter this year.
For the full year, Dillard’s profits hit $336 million, down from $463.9 million in the previous year. Revenue for Dillard’s for its full fiscal year were $6.75 billion, an improvement from $6.41 billion one year earlier.
Same-store sales rose 3%, according to company officials and gross margin improvement gained 40 basis points during the quarter.
“We are pleased to report a strong finish to a very successful year at Dillard’s. Our positive sales performance and gross margin expansion combined with expense control drove strong cash flow throughout the year. As a result, we were pleased to return cash to shareholders in the form of a $5.00 special dividend during the fourth quarter. Additionally, we purchased $185.5 million of Class A Common Stock during the year. As we mark our 75th year at Dillard’s this month, we are proud of our progress and excited about the future,” said CEO Bill Dillard.
Last week, Alexa Dillard, the widow of Dillard’s founder William T. Dillard, died at the age of 96.
Dillard’s shares (NYSE: DDS) closed trading on Friday at $84.92, but it was off to a rough start on Monday morning with shares trading as much as 5% lower. The company’s stock has traded between $58.42 and $89.98 during the past 52 weeks.