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Hudson’s Bay reports Q1 2,7% sales increase

Canadian department store group Hudson’s Bay reports Q1 same-store sales rose 2.7 percent on a constant currency basis, with its department store group sales increasing 4.9 percent. Same-store sales at its upscale Saks stores rose only 0.6 percent, and at OFF 5th outlets they rose 10.3 percent.

The company’s adjusted loss was C$33 million ($27 million) in the first quarter ended May 2, bigger than the C$27 million it incurred a year earlier.

Hudson’s Bay, which also runs Lord & Taylor stores in the United States, has been in high-level talks with Germany’s Metro to buy its department store chain, Kaufhof.

Hudson’s Bay plans to drive sales through strengthening its digital business, expanding OFF 5TH and bringing Saks Fifth Avenue and OFF 5TH to Canada, Chief Executive Jerry Storch said in a statement on Wednesday.

Competition has been intensifying in the Canadian luxury retail market, with the arrival of U.S. upscale department store operator Nordstrom Inc in September and expansion of Canadian retail chain Holt Renfrew.

Hudson’s Bay is also expected to face competition in the off-price retail market in the Unites States, with Macy’s Inc planning to roll out an off-price model. Nordstrom, which operates the off-price Rack stores in the United States, is also planning to launch them in Canada.

Digital sales at Hudson’s Bay jumped 37.2 percent in the first quarter. The company reported a net loss of C$54 million, or 30 Canadian cents per share, in the quarter, compared with a net profit of C$176 million. Sales rose 11.7 percent to C$2.07 billion, slightly missing analysts’ average estimate of C$2.08 billion.

Saks Fifth Avenue, Toronto

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