For its second quarter, Express, Inc. reported consolidated net sales decrease of 4 percent to 472.7 million dollars, with consolidated comparable sales down 6 percent. Comparable retail sales, which include both Express stores and e-commerce, decreased 7 percent and in total, retail sales decreased to 337.6 million dollars from 373.8 million dollars in the second quarter of 2018. Comparable outlet sales decreased 2 percent but total outlet sales increased to 121.3 million dollars from 107.2 million dollars in the same quarter last year. The company recently also appointed Malissa Akay as Executive Vice President and Chief Merchandising Officer and Sara Tervo as Executive Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer.
Commenting on the update, the company’s new Chief Executive Officer Tim Baxter, who joined Express on June 17, said in a statement: “Since joining Express in mid-June, I’ve been mainly focused on three key areas: developing a corporate strategy, building the right leadership team, and taking immediate action to change the trajectory of our business. Our second quarter results are not indicative of what this company can deliver, and I am committed to returning Express to long-term, profitable growth.”
Express expects decline in Q3 comparable sales The company said that second quarter gross margin contracted 160 basis points to 26.8 percent of net sales compared to 28.4 percent in last year’s second quarter. Loss before taxes was 9 million dollars compared to income before taxes of 3.2 million dollars in 2018, while net loss was 9.7 million dollars or 14 cents per diluted share compared to net income of 2.2 million dollars or 3 cents per diluted share, in the second quarter of 2018. Excluding costs related to the former CEO departure, adjusted net loss was 8.9 million dollars or 13 cents per diluted share.
For the third quarter, Express expects comparable sales to drop 6 to 7 percent and net loss of 5 to 7 million dollars or 8 cents to 10 cents per share compared to net income of 8 million dollars or 11 cents per share in the same quarter of 2018.