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Ulta Beauty sizzles; to open 100 stores


Ulta Beauty is on fire — offline and on.

The specialty beauty retailer plans to open 100 new stores in 2016 while also pursuing new merchandising initiative to enhance the productivity of existing locations.

The 100 store opening are included in a capital expenditure budget which increases to $390 million in 2016 from $299 million last year. The budget also includes funds for a new distribution center in Dallas, the accelerated rollout of prestige brand boutiques and enhancements to the Ulta Beauty Collection and fragrance fixtures in hundreds of stores.

Ulta’s fourth quarter same-store sales increased 12.5% during the fourth quarter, which ended January 31. Sales increased 21.1% to $1.3 billion and net income increased 23.6% to $107.8 million during the quarter.

For the full year, sales increased 21.1% to $3.9 billion and same-store sales rose 11.8% compared to a 9.9% increase the prior year. Profit increased 24.5% to $320 million.

The company’s e-commerce business is on fire too. Ulta said it fourth quarter e-commerce sales increased 44.2% to $94.8 million and full year e-commerce sales increased 47.5% to $221.1 million.

Ulta opened 103 new stores in 2015, including 14 in the fourth quarter, to end the year with 874 locations.

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