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Williams-Sonoma reports higher profit, revenue; CFO retires

Williams-Sonoma's fourth-quarter earnings rise 8%, but its fiscal 2012 earnings guidance is slightly below what analysts expect. It says Chief Operating Officer and CFO Sharon McCollam has retired.

March 08, 2012
  • Bloomberg News
Bloomberg News (m083hypd20120308101048/950 )

Home goods seller Williams-Sonoma Inc.said its fiscal fourth-quarter net income rose 8% on strong performances from its Pottery Barn and West Elm brands.

The results released Thursday beat Wall Street estimates, but the company offered fiscal 2012 earnings guidance that was slightly below what analysts expect. Its revenue forecast for the year, however, was above analysts' estimates.

The company also announced that Chief Operating Officer and Chief Financial Officer Sharon McCollam has retired.

Williams-Sonoma reported net income of $122.6 million, or $1.17 a share, for the period that ended Jan. 29. That's up from $113.4 million, or $1.05, a year earlier

and beat the $1.13 a share that analysts surveyed by FactSet expected.

Williams-Sonoma had cut its fourth-quarter earnings outlook in January because of holiday-season promotions. It also lowered its revenue forecast at that time.

Quarterly revenue for the San Francisco company rose 13% to $1.27 billion as online sales increased 18.1%. Wall Street expected revenue of $1.25 billion.

Williams-Sonoma said McCollam has retired from the company and will retire from its board March 16. The company appointed Julie Whalen, senior vice president, corporate controller and treasurer, as acting CFO.

For the full year, Williams-Sonoma earned $236.9 million, or $2.22 a share. That's up from $200.2 million, or $1.83, the previous year. Revenue increased 6% to $3.72 billion.

Williams-Sonoma, which has 576 stores, anticipates fiscal 2012 earnings per share of $2.37 to $2.47 on revenue of $3.93 billion and $4.02 billion. The company foresees first-quarter earnings of 29 cents to 32 cents a share on revenue of $800 million to $820 million.

Analysts predict full-year earnings of $2.48 a share on revenue of $3.91 billion and first-quarter earnings of 33 cents a share on revenue of $804.9 million.

Williams-Sonoma shares slumped $2.22, or 5.9%, to $35.62.

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