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Williams-Sonoma Q4 tops estimates as online surges 11.5%; ups dividend


San Francisco -- Williams-Sonoma reported a better-than-expected profit of $133.8 million in the fourth quarter, up slightly from $133.7 million in the year-ago period. The company also announced it is lifting its dividend 2 cents, or 6%, to 33 cents a share.

“Williams-Sonoma, Inc. outperformed the retail industry this holiday season, gaining market share and demonstrating the structural advantage of our multi-brand, multichannel platform,” said Laura Alber, president and CEO. “The strength of our brands across retail and e-commerce, in conjunction with disciplined execution, enabled our team to drive record operating results.”

Revenue for the quarter, which ended February 2, 2014, and had one less week than last year, rose 4.3% to $1.47 billion. Online sales surged 11.5% to $706.4 million. (E-commerce represented 44% of the company’s net revenues in fiscal 2013.)

“Our multichannel marketing, built from decades of data analytics experience, enables us to reach our customers and attract new ones in increasingly relevant ways,” Alber said.

Total same-store sales in the fourth quarter increased 10.4%. By brand, West Elm was on top, with 18.3% growth, while Pottery Barn’s sales were up 14.6%. Williams-Sonoma’s namesake stores posted a 2.3% increase. Pottery Barn Kids and PBteen were up 11.2% and 9.6%, respectively.

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