Slight Drop in 2nd Quarter Sales for Finlay

Finlay Enterprises, Inc., a leading retailer of fine jewelry and the largest operator of licensed fine jewelry departments in department stores in the United States, said sales for the second quarter ended Aug. 4, totaled $148 million, compared to $149.3 million in the second quarter of fiscal 2006.

The sales results are on a continuing operations basis, which exclude the sales in the current and prior year periods from the Parisian store group whose remaining departments closed in July 2007, as well as sales from discontinued Macy’s and Belk’s stores in the prior year period, the New York-based jeweler said.

Specialty jewelry stores Carlyle and Congress contributed sales of $27 million in the quarter, compared with $20 million in the same period last year. Total sales, including sales of the Parisian store group, for the second quarter were $154.4 million compared with $153.6 million in the prior year.

Same-store sales for the second quarter decreased 3.6 percent. As previously disclosed, the company estimates the calendar shift associated with Mother’s Day coming a week earlier this year had an approximate 3- to 4-percent negative impact on second quarter same-store sales. Same-store sales for the second quarter including discontinued stores decreased 1.3 percent.

Sales for the six months ended Aug. 4, increased 5.9 percent to $311 million compared to $293.6 million in the first six months of 2006. Specialty jewelry stores contributed sales of $54.2 million for the six month period, as compared to $37.5 million in 2006. Total sales, including sales of the Parisian store group, for the six months increased 5.9 percent to $320.8 million compared to $302.9 million for the comparable period in 2006.

Same-store sales for the six months increased 2.4 percent on a continuing operations basis. When including discontinued stores, same-store sales increased 3.3 percent.

“Year-to-date, we are pleased with our solid top line and comparable store sales growth,” said Arthur E. Reiner, Finlay Enterprises chairman and chief executive officer. “We experienced an improved sales trend as the second quarter progressed. Further, our Carlyle specialty jewelry stores have continued to perform particularly well.”

The company said it expects to report full financial results for the second quarter on Aug. 29.

Finlay Enterprises, Inc., through its wholly-owned subsidiary, Finlay Fine Jewelry Corp., operates luxury stand-alone jewelry stores primarily located in the southeastern United States. The number of locations totaled 725, including 33 Carlyle and five Congress specialty jewelry stores.