Signet Jewelers shares rocketed this week as it beat analyst estimates and its previous forecasts for holiday season trading.
The share price has risen from under $19 at the start of 2020 to over $30 today thanks to same store sales rising 1.6% for the 9 weeks ended January 4, 2020. Ecommerce sales were $252.3 million, up 13.5% year over year. Brick and mortar same store sales declined 0.2%.
Same store sales were down 3.1% in for the international division that is comprised of Ernest Jones and H. Samuel in the UK. Non-same store sales dropped by a higher figure of 3.5% because it compares sales to the same period in 2018 and there have been store closures through the year.
The group also updated its advice for 2020, projecting a small increase in same store sales of +0.1% compared to previous guidance of a 1.0 to 1.7% decline.
As recently as September, 2019, the share price was around $10.
Market conditions will still be tough, but continuing closures of unprofitable stores cheered investors.
Signet plans to close approximately 165 stores world-wide in Fiscal 2020 and open 38 stores, a net store reduction of 127 stores versus prior guidance of 115 net store reduction. No guidance was given on how many stores in the UK will be closed.
Virginia C. Drosos, Chief Executive Officer, gave her most upbeat assessment since taking over the top job. “We delivered holiday same store sales growth ahead of our guidance as we continued to implement year two of our Path to Brilliance transformation. Product newness, investments in our digital capabilities, and more targeted marketing campaigns drove both eCommerce and brick and mortar growth in North America. I would like to sincerely thank our 30,000 team members, whose dedication and customer focus enabled our strong execution this holiday season and positive revision to our Fiscal 2020 guidance,” she said.
With just the fourth quarter of Signet’s financial year to go, the group expects full year sales of $6.1 billion for 2020 and operating income of $179 million to $189 million.