WestPoint Stevens Inc. today reported results for the third quarter ended September 30, 2003.
The Company's net sales for the third quarter of 2003 decreased 3% to $445.2 million compared with $460.5 million a year ago. Sales declined primarily from a reduction in the Company's mill store sales as a result of restructuring initiatives that have reduced the total number of retail stores to 38 from 59 in the year ago period. To a lesser extent the Company also experienced a slight decline in its bedding related products due to ongoing competitive pricing pressure.
Net income for the third quarter of 2003 was a loss of $12.8 million or $0.26 per diluted share compared with a net loss of $16.6 million or $0.33 per diluted share in 2002.
Loss before taxes for the third quarter of 2003 was $16.0 million compared with a loss before taxes in 2002 of $25.9 million. Included in the third quarter of 2003 were $8.7 million in expenses related to the Company's restructuring initiatives, and $12.7 million in expenses related to the current bankruptcy proceedings compared with $16.1 million in expenses in the third quarter of 2002 related to WestPoint Stevens previously announced restructuring initiatives.
M. L. ''Chip'' Fontenot, WestPoint Stevens President and CEO commented, ''The third quarter saw improving retail sales and reorder activity returned to more acceptable levels. We were especially gratified by a strong response by retailers to our product introductions at the Home Fashion Market last month. We are continuing to manage our business proactively and during the quarter reduced our inventories 3% compared with year ago levels and under our $300 million debtor-in-possession facility, we ended the quarter with availability of $152 million.''
Mr. Fontenot continued, ''The Company is continuing to move forward on a consensual basis with negotiating new terms for a Chapter 11 plan of reorganization with all its major creditor constituencies. While the retail environment remains challenging we are seeing signs of continued improvement in the fourth quarter of 2003 and are well positioned to benefit from recent market opportunities associated with Pillowtex's liquidation.''