Ulta posts quarterly results, sees double-digit sales gains

ROMEOVILLE, Ill. Ulta posted double-digit gains in sales and profits during the third quarter and issued a full-year fiscal 2007 guidance.

Net sales for the quarter ended Nov. 3 totaled $208.2 million, up 25.4 percent from $166.1 million in the year-ago period. Same-store sales rose 6.7 percent. Net income climbed up 16.3 percent to $4.2 million compared with $3.6 million last year.

“I am pleased with our positioning as we start the holiday period and equally excited to begin this next phase of our journey as a public company focused on increasing value for all Ulta stakeholders,” stated Lyn Kirby, president and chief executive officer.

On Oct. 30, the company closed its IPO of common stock in which the company raised net proceeds of $123.9 million. The proceeds were used to pay $93 million of accumulated preferred dividends, $4.8 million to redeem the company’s Series III preferred stock and $26.1 million to reduce borrowings and for general corporate purposes. In connection with the offering, the company also converted more than 41 million preferred shares into common shares.

Meanwhile, on Nov. 16, the company relaunched its e-commerce Web site, which was later than originally planned and, as a result, modestly affected total sales growth during the quarter.

During the quarter, the company opened 26 stores and remodeled seven locations, ending the quarter with 237 stores. In fiscal 2007, it plans to open 53 locations and remodel 17.

For full year fiscal 2007, the company estimates sales in the range of $907 million to $913 million, compared to actual fiscal 2006 sales of $755.1 million. Same-store sales are expected to increase by 6.2 percent to 6.9 percent. Income per diluted share is expected to range between 47 cents and 49 cents, compared with actual fiscal 2006 income per diluted share of 45 cents.

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