Strategic plan continues profit growth for Vera Bradley

(Photo Supplied/ Visit Fort Wayne)

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (Inside Indiana Business): Fort Wayne-based Vera Bradley Inc. (Nasdaq: VRA) is reporting fiscal third-quarter net income of $4.2 million, up from $359,000 during the same period last year. Chief Executive Officer Robert Wallstrom says the increase is due to the successful execution of the company’s Vision 20/20 plan, which was announced last year.

Wallstrom says the comprehensive plan to lower the number of clearance sales offered by the company and reduce its expense structure is paying off. He says the company lowered its clearance selling by more than 70 percent and its full-price business grew by double digits in the quarter. However, he adds the third quarter earnings were modestly below expectations, due in part to higher-than-expected shipping costs.

“As we dramatically adjusted the level of clearance on verabradley.com and in our full-line stores, we expected that sales performance this year could be a bit inconsistent,” said Wallstrom. “While softer than expected October sales affected third quarter performance, we were pleased to see strong performance over Black Friday weekend and on Cyber Monday, particularly as we focused more on full-price selling and less on clearance. Customers responded to our simplified and more impactful promotional messaging and our focus on key items over the holiday weekend.”

The company is also reporting year-to-date net income of $12.1 million, compared to a net loss of $1.5 million during the same period in the prior fiscal year. You can connect to the full fiscal third-quarter earnings report by clicking here.

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