J.Jill, Inc. (NYSE:JILL) Q3 2019 Earnings Conference Call - Final Transcript

Dec 05, 2019 • 08:00 am ET


J.Jill, Inc. (NYSE:JILL) Q3 2019 Earnings Conference Call - Final Transcript


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Good morning, my name is Carol, and I will be your conference operator today. At this time, I would like to welcome everyone to the J.Jill Third Quarter 2019 Conference Call. On today's call are Jim Scully, Interim CEO of J.Jill, Inc. and Mark Webb, Executive Vice President and CFO. 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)

Before we begin, I need to remind you that certain comments made during this call may constitute forward-looking statements and are made pursuant to and within the meaning of the Safe Harbor provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 as amended. Such forward-looking statements are subject to both known and unknown risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from such statements. Those risks and uncertainties are described in the press release and J.Jill's SEC filings. The forward-looking statements made today are that of the date of this call and we do not undertake any obligation to update any forward-looking statements.

Finally, we may refer to certain adjusted or non-GAAP financial measures on this call. A reconciliation schedule showing the GAAP versus non-GAAP financial measures is available in our press release issued today. If you do not have a copy of today's press release, you may obtain one by visiting the Investor Relations page of our website at jjill.com.

I will now turn the call over to Jim.

Jim Scully

Thank you and good morning everyone. As I'm sure you saw in today's press release, I am stepping into the role as the Company's Interim CEO. On behalf of the Board, I want to thank Linda for her dedication and commitment to J.Jill over the past 2.5 years, including the past 1.5 year as CEO. I joined the Board two years ago, know the brand well, have great respect for our teams and I'm looking forward to leading the Company to a smooth transition.

Turning to our performance. Our third quarter results fell short of our expectations with total comparable sales declining 7% as the assortment did not resonate as strongly with our customers as originally planned, particularly in our store channel. These results were offset by an improvement in our direct channel, which grew to 43% of total sales versus 39.8% last year. Although our store channel is one to be admired in retail where the economics we produce, its performance has slowed and we need to better align our two channels to fully capitalize on and build our omnichannel customer segment.

Before I turn the call over to Mark to review the financial results in more detail, I would like to spend a moment to discuss what I will be focused on initially with our teams. Clearly, the first priority is to stabilize the business. We as a team need to focus on our customer, marketing, product, operating fundamentals and financial discipline. In addition, the team has been working on go-forward