On Nov. 26, Zale Corp. revealed positive first-quarter financial results for fiscal year 2014 (ending Oct. 31): a 4.4 percent increase in same-store sales and 1.4 percent increase in revenue—from $357 million to $363 million—compared with the same period last year.
At branded stores (Zales Jewelers and Zales Outlets) comp store sales rose 7.5 percent. U.S. fine jewelry brands (Zales Jewelers, Zales Outlets, and Gordon’s Jewelers) saw comp store sales increase 6.3 percent.
Comp store sales at Peoples Jewellers branded stores rose 3.1 percent. And the Canadian fine jewelry brands (Peoples and Mappins Jewellers) saw a 2 percent same-store sales bump.
Comp sales at Piercing Pagoda declined 1.8 percent.
“We have now delivered positive comparable store sales for 12 consecutive quarters. Importantly, our core national brands drove our sales performance in the first quarter,” said Zale CEO Theo Killion in a statement, citing Zales and Peoples.
“For Holiday, we have expanded our exclusive, branded product offerings”—i.e., Vera Wang LOVE, the Celebration Diamond Collection, Candy Colored Diamonds and Gemstones— “launched a new marketing campaign, and improved the store environment to enrich the guest experience,” Killion continued. (Read the full report here.)
For the remainder of FY2014, Zale expects continued revenue growth—partially offset by store closures (largely in regional brands Gordon’s and Mappins, plus Piercing Pagoda kiosks) and driven by Zales’ and Peoples’ positive comps and expansion of its exclusive branded products. The company aims to pull at least 13 percent of its fine jewelry revenue from that branded category.