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Burlington Stores runs strong in Q4; sees plenty of room for expansion


Shoppers just can’t get enough of off-price stores.

On the heels of strong results by TJX Cos. and Ross Stores, Burlington Stores on Thursday turned in a stellar fourth quarter performance that included its 16th consecutive quarter of same-store sales increases. And it also revealed plans to expand its store base.

Burlington’s net income in the quarter, ended January 28, surged 27.1% to $125.6 million, or $1.77 per share. Earnings, adjusted for one-time gains and costs, were $1.78 per share. The results easily topped Wall Street expectations.

Net sales rose 9.4% to $1.69 billion in the period, also exceeding Street forecasts. Same-store sales rose 4.6%.

“Burlington is gaining ground outside of its traditional apparel offer, with range developments in both home and beauty helping to drive up average basket sizes,” commented Håkon Helgesen, analyst at GlobalData Reta. “While neither category is yet at maximum customer penetration, shopper interest and purchasing rates continue to grow which indicates that Burlington has pitched these categories correctly and is executing them well in store. In our view, this range extension is one of the most exciting growth vectors for Burlington over the next few years and we believe it will continue to support good levels of same-store sales growth.

On the chain’s quarterly earnings call, CEO Tom Kingsbury said the company will open 30 or more stores this year, and that its long-term goal is to expand to 1,000 locations. Burlington operated 592 stores in 45 states and Puerto Rico at the end of the quarter.

For the year, the company reported profit of $215.9 million, or $3.01 per share. Revenue came in $5.57 billion.

“For the year, we delivered 9.2% total sales growth, a 100 basis point expansion in adjusted EBITDA margin rate, and a 40% increase in adjusted net Income per share,” stated Kingsbury.

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