Ulta’s Q2 earnings outperform predictions, online purchases see 200% boost

The US pure-play beauty retailer saw net income for the quarter come in at $8.1m with a dilutive share of $0.14

America’s largest beauty retailer Ulta has reported better than predicted earnings for Q2.

Analysts polled by FactSet and cited by MarketWatch had anticipated the pure-play beauty retailer would post adjusted profit of US$0.06 per share on sales of $1.25bn, according to reports.

But the company’s net income came in at $8.1m with a dilutive share of $0.14.

Despite not hitting anywhere near earnings of $161m from the same period in 2019, Ulta’s CEO Mary Dillon said she was optimistic about the retailer’s future.

“We have navigated the disruption and uncertainty of Covid-19 with our associates and guests at the heart of every decision,” said the American businesswoman.

“While the pandemic continues to impact our business, we are encouraged by improving trends.

“Comparable sales trends improved significantly throughout the quarter, from decreasing 37% in early May, as we began reopening stores, to decreasing 10% in July, when most of our stores were reopened.

“Notably, sales trends have continued to improve, with comparable sales down in the mid-single digit range for the first three weeks of August.”

Ulta’s gross profit decreased to $329m compared with $605m in the second quarter of fiscal 2019, a decrease of 26.8%.

Dillon concluded: “We believe the near-term operating environment will continue to be dynamic and challenging, but I remain optimistic and excited about the long term opportunity for Ulta Beauty.”

Ulta also reported a 200% boost in e-commerce sales for the Q2 due to store closures during the stay at home order.

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