During the Wachovia Consumer Growth Conference on Oct. 15, Zumiez President and CEO Rick Brooks stressed that the company is on track, despite the tough economic times, to reach its goal of 800 stores.

 

The company currently has 338 stores in 31 states, and had about a 29% increase in compounded annual sales growth with a 24% increase in store count. Brooks stated that the key to this steady growth has been to focus on new, young brands. Year-to-date second quarter sales for the company were up about 13% to $171 million, while same-store sales declined 1.3%.


CFO Trevor Lang acknowledged that 2008 has been a disappointing year for “most of the retail world,” and stated that the apparel side of the business, which makes up about 50% of ZumiezÂ’ inventory, is where the company has struggled this year.


“The consumer is very smart. They are looking for a deal. We have seen our apparel comps become very tough, both from a sales perspective and a margin perspective,” observed Lang.