Caleres, Inc. (NYSE:CAL) Q1 2018 Earnings Conference Call - Final Transcript

May 31, 2018 • 04:30 pm ET

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Caleres, Inc. (NYSE:CAL) Q1 2018 Earnings Conference Call - Final Transcript

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Presentation
Operator
Operator

Good afternoon, my name is Akle and I will be your conference operator today. At this time, I would like to welcome everyone to the First Quarter 2018 Earnings Conference Call. All lines have been placed on mute to prevent any background noise. After the speakers remarks there will be a question-and-answer session. (Operator Instructions) Thank you.

Ms. Peggy Reilly Tharp, you may begin your conference.

Executive
Peggy Reilly Tharp

Thank you. Good afternoon. I'm Peggy Reilly Tharp, Vice President of Investor Relations for Caleres and I'd like to thank you for joining our first quarter 2018 earnings call and webcast. A press release with detailed financial tables and slides are both available at caleres.com. Please be aware today's discussion contains forward-looking statements which are expected to a number of risks and uncertainties.

Actual results may differ materially due to various risk factors including but not limited to the factors disclosed in the Company's Form 10-K and other filings with the US Securities and Exchange Commission. Please refer to today's press release or SEC filings for more information of risk factors and other factors which could impact forward-looking statements. Copies of these reports are available online. The Company undertakes no obligation to update any information discussed in this call at any time. Joining the call today are Diane Sullivan, CEO, President and Chairman; Ken Hannah, Chief Financial Officer; and Rick Ausick, President of Famous Footwear.

And I would now like to turn the call over to Diane Sullivan.

Executive
Diane M. Sullivan

Good afternoon, everyone. And thank you for joining us today to talk about our first quarter. As we delivered adjusted earnings per share of $0.43, up 7.5% on a consolidated sales that were essentially flat. At Famous, like most in the retail space, we battled unseasonably cold weather early in the quarter, but as expected spring arrived and so did the customer.

Here are a few stats to give you an idea of the magnitude of the positive shift we've seen since the warm weather has broken. For February, comps were down 4%, then the trend improved slightly in March to flat and for April, comps were up 1.1% in total with the last two weeks of the month up more than 13%. Additionally as you know, nearly 50% of our sales at Famous are in the north east and north central portions of the country. The good news is this positive momentum continued across the country into our second quarter with year-to-date comp sales up 1% through yesterday. This is just another great example of how the consumer shopped on their calendar, not on a retail or earnings calendar, which is why we felt it was very important in the quarter to maintain a consistent promotional calendar.

We are pleased to how quickly the environment improved and our expectations for 2018 remain very much on track. For the Brand Portfolio, sales were up 1.4% in the first quarter and the strong shipments we saw at the end of the fourth quarter are selling through at rates