1-800-Flowers.com 2Q earnings slip, tops Street

Associated Press Modified: January 27, 2011 at 9:00 am •  Published: January 27, 2011
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CARLE PLACE, N.Y. (AP) — The flowers and gourmet food basket retailer 1-800-Flowers.com Inc. said Thursday that its fiscal second-quarter earnings dropped 12 percent, but still beat Wall Street's expectations.

Its stock rose 29 cents, or 11.4 percent, to $2.84 in morning trading. Over the past year, the shares have traded between $1.52 and $3.66.

The company reported 653,000 new customers in the quarter, with the majority — 79 percent — coming from online channels. Repeat customers totaled 61 percent.

1-800-Flowers.com reported net income of $13.5 million, or 21 cents per share, for the three months ended Dec. 26, down from $15.3 million, or 24 cents per share, a year ago.

But the results surpassed the 17 cents per share that analysts polled by FactSet expected.

Revenue edged down 1 percent to $235.4 million from $238.5 million, pressured by lower wholesale order volume in its mass market channel and revenue that it lost related to the termination of its third-party marketing program. Wall Street analysts expected $219 million.

The company said its BloomNet business continues to grow and that its gourmet food and basket product lines had strong online growth, particularly for the 1-800-Baskets.com brand.

Gross profit margin improved to 42 percent from 41.8 percent as fewer promotions and enhanced manufacturing efficiencies offset commodity price hikes.

Looking ahead to the third quarter, CEO Jim McCann said in a statement that the results typically are driven by floral sales because of the Valentine's holiday. But he said that when Valentine's Day falls on a Monday, which it does this year, it historically has a significant negative effect on floral sales.