DailyFinance  Dec 2  Comment 
Filed under: Lifestyle, Fashion Happy Friday and December! Ohhhh how time is flying by! I already have holiday parties coming up this weekend... I can't believe it. This weekend is a tacky holiday party, and the next few weeks are full of...
Clusterstock  Nov 8  Comment 
Elections and the stock market: History tells us economics matter more than politics. Could it be different this time? Join the conversation about this story » NOW WATCH: LIZ ANN SONDERS: The most unsettling outcome for...
Clusterstock  Oct 15  Comment 
Elections and the stock market: History tells us economics matter more than politics. Could it be different this time? Join the conversation about this story » NOW WATCH: LIZ ANN SONDERS: The most unsettling outcome for...
MarketWatch  Sep 20  Comment 
Ascena Retail Group stock down 27% after disappointing earnings.
MarketWatch  Sep 19  Comment 
Shares of Ascena Retail Group Inc. fell nearly 24% in late trading Monday after the parent of Ann Taylor, Lane Bryant, and other apparel retailers reported adjusted earnings well below Wall Street expectations and also missed sales expectations....
Forbes  Feb 29  Comment 
ANN ARBOR, Mich.–Two of the biggest obstacles to buying a fully electric vehicle is the premium price over comparable gasoline-powered vehicles, and the cheap gas prices U.S. drivers are enjoying these days. But, according to a new report, the...
MarketWatch  Dec 15  Comment 
Ascena Retail Group Inc. shares rose in the extended session Tuesday after the operator of Ann Taylor and Lane Bryant stores announced a new share buyback program. Ascena shares advanced 4.7% to $10.18. The company said its board approved a $200...
Wall Street Journal  Oct 8  Comment 
Private-equity firm Golden Gate Capital disclosed a 9% stake in Ascena Retail and said it is in early stages of discussions with the apparel retailer on ways to create value for shareholders.
Market Intelligence Center  Aug 18  Comment 
For a hedged play on Ann Inc. (ANN) MarketIntelligenceCenter.com’s patented trade-picking algorithms recommend the Dec. '15 $45.00 covered call for a net debit in the $44.01 area. That is also the break-even stock price for the covered call....


Ann Taylor Stores (NYSE: ANN) sells women's clothing in the United States and Puerto Rico under the names Ann Taylor, Ann Taylor LOFT, and Ann Taylor Factory Store. Through its various brands, the company seeks to provide busy women with an all inclusive shopping experience. The namesake brand focuses on meeting women's professional attire needs, while the LOFT store focuses on casual attire. In fiscal 2010, ANN posted $1.98 billion in net sales and $73.4 million in net income.[1]

In recent years, ANN's performance has been quite erratic. A lack of proper controls has often led to excess inventory and heavy discounting. Under the present leadership, ANN has sought to exercise better inventory oversight while repositioning its brands as full-priced destinations. As the company's main brands, Ann Taylor and Ann Taylor Loft approach market saturation, the company will be forced to develop new concepts in order to maintain acceptable growth.

Business Overview

Business Segments

Business Growth

Fiscal 2010 Performance (ended January 29th, 2011)

  • Net sales increased 8.3% to $1.98 billion.[1]
  • ANN posted net income of $73.4 million, compared to a $18.2 million loss in fiscal 2009.[1]

Trends and Forces

"Almost-luxury" Brands Hurt by Recessionary U.S. Economic Cycles

Consumer spending on near luxury goods such as ANN products is discretionary in nature. In times of economic recession consumer's quickly decrease expenditure on non-necessities like cashmere fleeces. For example, during a subprime lending crisis, real estate and credit markets are severely affected. Consumers faced with an inability to draw on equity in their home to fund purchases and a tougher overall credit market were in many instances "forced" to spend less on clothing. Additionally, other economic factors like the price of oil can further decrease disposable income available for discretionary purchases. Under such conditions, consumers to who do purchase clothing tend to skew their purchases toward lower-end retailers.

Reaching Market Saturation

Both of ANN's primary concepts are approaching market saturation. In order to keep growth from stalling, Ann Taylor is working on new outlets, like a new venture into high end custom designed fashion.


The retail environment is highly competitive especially in women’s apparel.

  • Talbots (TLB) - TLB has a successful women's apparel line, and also targets women over 35.
  • Chico's FAS (CHS) - CHS also has a successful women's apparel line.
  • Gap (GPS) - GPS offers similar apparel styles as ANN.
  • Nordstrom (JWN) - Brands sold at Nordstrom compete for female consumers who also shop at Ann Taylor and/or LOFT.
  • Macy's (M) - Brands sold at Macy's compete for female consumers who also shop at Ann Taylor and/or LOFT.
  • Limited Brands (LTD) - The Limited offers similar styles to Ann Taylor, but also has the very successful Victoria's Secret brand.

Superb ifnomraotin here, ol'e chap; keep burning the midnight oil.

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