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Merchandising miss hits Christopher & Banks in Q2


Minneapolis – A “merchandising misstep” took its toll on Christopher & Banks in its second quarter as sales decreased more than expected.

The company posted a net loss of $710,000 in the quarter, compared to earnings of $3.36 million in the year-ago period.

Sales totaled $94 million, down 12% from $106.6 million a year ago. The chain’s store portfolio was about 5% smaller than it was a year ago due to the company’s ongoing makeover project, which has resulted in some closings, and consolidations of its main store with its misses and petite-size outlets.

Same-store sales fell 12.4% in the quarter.

In the wake of the disappointing results, Christopher & Banks said it would slow its store conversion program and focus on maximizing the performance of its existing stores.

During 2015, to retailer expects to open nine new MPW stores and 33 outlet stores and to end the year with approximately 525 stores, of which 320 are MPWs, as compared to 518 stores at the end of fiscal 2014.

“Our disappointing second quarter performance reflects a combination of both macro headwinds, as well as company-specific factors that impacted our business, particularly in late June and in the month of July,” said CEO LuAnn Via. “While we have taken immediate action in a number of areas to address certain merchandising missteps and have seen trends in the business improve somewhat since July, much of the benefit from these initiatives is expected to drive improved sales for holiday 2015 and spring 2016.”

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