|Kay Jewelers, owned by Signet Jewelers|
Income before income taxes for fiscal 2012 increased 67.1 percent to $502.1 million. Diluted earnings per share rose 60.8 percent to $3.73. The Signet board declared an increased quarterly dividend of $0.12 per share, up 20 percent.
Sales in the U.S., which accounts for 81 percent of total group sales, increased 10.6 percent to $3.03 billion. Sales n the U.K., which accounts for 19 percent of total group sales, increased 3.2 percent to $715,100 million.
Same store sales in the U.S. rose 11.1 percent for the year and rose a 0.9 percent in the U.K. for the same period.
Signet operates approximately 1,853 specialty retail jewelry stores, including 1,318 stores in the U.S., under the store brands Kay Jewelers, Jared The Galleria Of Jewelry and a number of regional names. The company operates approximately 535 stores in the U.K., under the store brands H.Samuel, Ernest Jones and Leslie Davis.
“Fiscal 2012 was another outstanding year for Signet, said Mike Barnes, Signet CEO. “The increased quarterly dividend of $0.12 per share demonstrates the confidence the Board has in the strength of our business model and our ability to generate positive cash flow, while continuing to invest in, and support, our long term growth initiatives. We are pleased with our sales for Valentine’s Day and believe that Signet is well positioned for Fiscal 2013.”
There was some softness in the fourth quarter for the Bermuda-based company, when compared to the strong growth in the prior three quarters. Total sales increased 6.6 percent to $1.35 billion, with U.S. stores accounting for $1.09 billion in sales and the U.K. representing $263,700. Same store sales increased 6.9 percent for the period ended January 28 (U.S. 8.3 percent; U.K. 1.7 percent).
Income before income taxes increased nearly 52 percent for the quarter to $242.4 million and diluted earnings per share rose nearly 48 percent to $1.79.
Signet said it repurchased $11.8 million of its common shares in the fourth quarter of Fiscal 2012. A total of $288.2 million remained available for future repurchases under the program.