CHARLOTTE, N.C.-An uptick in sales and a watchful eye on expenses propelled Belk to a healthy 11.3 percent increase in net income in its fiscal second quarter, to $30.5 million.
Net sales rose 3.6 percent to $899.5 million, which included a same-store sales gain of 3.2 percent. According to a statement from the department-store retailer, the product categories showing the strongest performance were men’s, kids, activewear and ladies’ contemporary sportswear and dresses. Belk also enjoyed a huge 48.5 percent increase in e-commerce sales in the quarter, which ended on Aug. 3.
Selling, general and administrative expenses edged up 1.4 percent in dollars but dropped 57 basis points as a percentage of sales, to 26.5 percent. Interest expense fell 10.5 percent.
Tim Belk, Belk’s chairman and CEO, said the retailer’s quarter, which took place in a somewhat soft retail environment, was fueled by the investments the company has made in its business. “While those investments impact our short-term profitability, we are confident they will position us well for the future,” Belk said.