Burlington Stores, Inc. (NYSE:BURL) Q2 2019 Earnings Conference Call - Final Transcript

Aug 29, 2019 • 08:30 am ET

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Burlington Stores, Inc. (NYSE:BURL) Q2 2019 Earnings Conference Call - Final Transcript

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Executive
Marc Katz

negative impact from management transition costs.

With that, I will turn it over to Tom for closing remarks.

Executive
Thomas A. Kingsbury

Thanks, Marc. I want to briefly address a few additional topics before we go into the Q&A portion of the call. First, as we indicated in this morning's earnings press release, we are very pleased to have launched our first corporate social responsibility report. We recognize that our long-term success is supported by our commitment to act in socially responsible and sustainable ways. We have made meaningful progress in these areas for several years and now we are in a position to share that progress publicly with our stakeholders today.

I am very proud of the progress we have made on the ESG front, including, the reductions we have made in our CO2 emissions and our energy consumption. Earning numerous workplace awards including a great place to Work Awards, as well as Fortune Awards for best workplaces for women, diversity in retail. Our extensive philanthropic activities, including nearly 10 million raised in 2018 for great causes such as the Leukemia and Lymphoma Foundation, where we are among the largest corporate donors. And lastly, further strengthening our governance. We acknowledge that this is a long-term process and we are committed to continuously improve. We've plan to update our stakeholders with our progress each year with an updated CSR report.

Secondly, this is my last earnings call as Burlington's Chief Executive Officer. I want to thank all of our associates for their strong support over the last 10 plus years, which have been the most rewarding years of my long retailing career. I am really proud of what the Burlington team has accomplished. Together, we have assembled an incredible foundation from which the organization will continue to build. Since going public in 2013, we have, recorded positive comparable store sales in all 24 quarters, opened 188 net new stores, on track to convert over 60% of our store fleet to our brand standard by the end of 2019, expanded our EBIT margin over 400 basis points and most importantly, increased our equity market capitalization from just over $1 billion at the time of our IPO to well over $11 billion today. That said, we still have many opportunities ahead of us. We have significant potential to grow underdeveloped merchandise categories to drive comparable store sales. We can expand our store base to at least a 1,000 stores, and we have more EBIT margin expansion potential.

Based on the strength of our team and our incoming CEO, Michael O'Sullivan, the future for Burlington is very bright. As we discussed on our previous earnings call, Michael starts with us on September 16th. Many of you have asked us what if any strategic changes he may make as CEO? Michael hasn't started yet, and has not had the chance to work with our team. Let's give him a chance to start and get to know the company. During the hiring process, Michael was much aligned with the