updated 3/15/2011 9:15:47 PM ET 2011-03-16T01:15:47

Net Sales for the Fourth Quarter of 2010 Increased 22% to $190 million

Net Sales for Fiscal Year 2010 Increased 21% to $635 million

EPS of $0.44 for the Fourth Quarter of 2010 and $1.21 for Fiscal Year 2010

WARRENDALE, Pa., March 15, 2011 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- rue21, inc. (Nasdaq:RUE) today announced its financial results for the fourth quarter and fiscal year ended January 29, 2011.

Highlights for the Fourth Quarter of Fiscal Year 2010:

  • Net sales increased 22.3% to $190.1 million from $155.4 million in the fourth quarter of fiscal year 2009, which ended January 30, 2010.
  • Comparable store sales increased 1.5% on top of an 8.6% increase for the same period in 2009.
  • The Company opened 10 stores in the quarter versus 3 in the same period last year.
  • Gross margin increased to 35.8% from 35.7% in the fourth quarter of fiscal year 2009.
  • Fourth quarter net income increased 41% to $10.9 million from $7.7 million in the fourth quarter of fiscal year 2009.
  • Diluted earnings per share were $0.44 compared to diluted earnings per share of $0.32 in the fourth quarter of fiscal year 2009.
  • Average diluted shares outstanding were 25.0 million in the fourth quarter of fiscal 2010 versus 24.3 million in the comparable period last year.

Highlights for Fiscal Year 2010:

  • Net sales increased 20.8% to $634.7 million from $525.6 million in fiscal year 2009.
  • Comparable-store sales increased 2.1% on top of a 7.8% increase in fiscal year 2009.
  • The Company opened 105 stores, closed 2 stores, and converted 31 stores to the rue21 etc! format. The Company ended the year with 638 stores in 44 states.
  • Gross margin increased 120 bps to 37.0% from 35.8% in fiscal year 2009.
  • Operating margin increased to 7.9% of net sales from 7.0% of net sales in fiscal year 2009.
  • Net income increased 37.4% to $30.2 million from $22.0 million in fiscal year 2009.
  • Diluted earnings per share were $1.21 versus $0.96 for fiscal 2009.
  • The Company ended fiscal 2010 with no long-term debt and $50.1 million in cash and cash equivalents compared to $26.8 million at the end of fiscal year 2009, an 87% increase.

Bob Fisch, rue21's President and CEO, stated: "We are pleased with the consistent performance we were able to deliver to our shareholders in 2010, topped off by 38% earnings per share growth in the fourth quarter. We opened 105 stores in 2010 which performed above our expectations. The Company had strong growth across all categories, with our etc! accessories merchandise leading the way as we converted 31 stores during the year to our larger etc! format.  We are planning for 110 new stores and approximately 35 conversions in 2011. I am pleased with February and early March results due to our excellent selling of regular priced merchandise in all categories of business. We feel well positioned to achieve another quarter of profitable growth."

Outlook:

For fiscal year 2011, the Company currently expects diluted earnings per share to be in the range of $1.40 to $1.44 as compared to $1.21 in fiscal year 2010. This is based on 25.2 million average diluted shares expected for fiscal year 2011 as compared to 25.0 million average diluted shares in fiscal year 2010. For the first quarter, the Company currently expects diluted earnings per share to be in the range of $0.27 to $0.29 as compared to $0.23 in the first quarter of fiscal year 2010. The Company currently expects a low to mid single digit comparable store sales increase in the first quarter of fiscal 2011.

Conference Call Information:

A conference call to discuss fourth quarter and fiscal 2010 financial results is scheduled for today, March 15, 2011 at 4:30 PM Eastern Time.  To participate, dial toll-free (888) 556-4997 or (719) 325-2230 (international). The conference call will also be webcast live at www.rue21.com under the Investor Relations section. A replay of this call will be available on the Investor Relations section of the Company's website, www.rue21.com, within two hours of the conclusion of the call and will remain on the website for ninety days.

About rue21, inc.

rue21 is a leading specialty apparel retailer offering exclusive branded merchandise and the newest trends at a great value. At the end of the fourth quarter of fiscal 2010, the Company operated 638 stores in 44 states. Learn more at www.rue21.com .

Forward Looking Statements:

Certain statements herein, including statements relating to future store openings and growth strategies, are "forward-looking statements" made pursuant to the safe harbor provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Such forward-looking statements reflect the Company's current expectations or beliefs concerning future events and actual results of operations may differ materially from historical results or current expectations. Any such forward-looking statements are subject to various risks and uncertainties, including the strength of the economy, consumer spending, our ability to effectively identify and respond to changing fashion trends, our ability to compete with other retailers, our strategy and expansion plans, implementation of systems upgrades, reliance on key personnel, trade restrictions, events that may affect our vendors or their ability to finance their operations, availability of suitable new store locations and other factors which are set forth in the Company's Annual Report on Form 10-K filed March 31, 2010, and in all filings with the SEC made by the Company subsequent to the filing of the Form 10-K. The Company does not undertake to publicly update or revise its forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.

         
rue21, inc.  
Consolidated Statements of Income  
         
  Thirteen weeks ended Fifty-two weeks ended
  January 29, January 30, January 29, January 30,
  2011 2010 2011 2010
   (Unaudited)
   (in thousands, except per share data)
         
Net sales  $ 190,093  $ 155,386  $ 634,728  $ 525,600
Cost of goods sold (includes certain buying,        
occupancy and distribution center expenses)  122,090  99,960  399,896  337,693
Gross profit  68,003  55,426  234,832  187,907
         
Selling, general, and administrative expense  44,337  37,862  163,006  134,078
Depreciation and amortization expense  5,915  4,703  21,852  16,898
Income from operations  17,751  12,861  49,974  36,931
         
Interest expense, net  30  99  202  532
Income before income taxes  17,721  12,762  49,772  36,399
         
Provision for income taxes  6,831  5,040  19,528  14,382
Net income  $ 10,890  $ 7,722  $ 30,244  $ 22,017
         
Basic income per common share  $ 0.45  $ 0.33  $ 1.25  $ 0.99
Diluted income per common share  $ 0.44  $ 0.32  $ 1.21  $ 0.96
         
Weighted average basic common shares outstanding  24,335  23,530  24,277  22,267
Weighted average diluted common shares outstanding  25,029  24,281  25,002  23,037
         
     
rue21, inc. and subsidiary     
Consolidated Balance Sheets    
     
  January 29, January 30,
  2011 2010
  (Unaudited)
  (in thousands, except per share data)
Assets    
Current assets:    
Cash and cash equivalents  $ 50,111  $ 26,751
Accounts receivable  6,733  3,834
Merchandise inventory, net  96,051  72,693
Prepaid expenses and other current assets  10,580  6,783
Deferred tax assets  5,024  4,286
Total current assets  168,499  114,347
     
Property and equipment, net  91,371  73,147
     
Other assets  921  937
Total assets  $ 260,791  $ 188,431
Liabilities and stockholders' equity    
Current liabilities:    
Accounts payable  $ 82,075  $ 59,963
Accrued expenses and other current liabilities  15,616  14,384
Accrued payroll and related taxes  12,053  10,486
Deferred rent and tenant allowances, current portion  7,033  5,509
Accrued income and franchise taxes  1,999  2,401
Total current liabilities  118,776  92,743
     
Long-term liabilities:    
Long-term debt  –  –
Deferred rent, tenant allowances and other long-term liabilities  34,235  23,991
Deferred tax liabilities  5,651  4,249
Total long-term liabilities  39,886  28,240
     
Total liabilities  158,662  120,983
     
Commitments and Contingencies    
     
Stockholders' equity:    
Common stock -- par value $0.001 per share; 200,000 shares authorized; 24,379

issued and outstanding at January 29, 2011; 24,237 shares issued and outstanding

at January 30, 2010
 24  24
Additional paid in capital  31,552  27,115
Retained earnings  70,553  40,309
Total stockholder's equity  102,129  67,448
     
Total liabilities and stockholders' equity   $ 260,791  $ 188,431
     
CONTACT: Joseph Teklits / Melissa Mackay
         ICR, Inc
         203-682-8200
         jteklits@icrinc.com

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