Strong Online, In-Store Q3 For Ulta Beauty

In a strong third-quarter performance that showed momentum in both online and brick-and-mortar sales, Ulta Beauty showed gains on both its top and bottom lines and boosted its annual guidance for what said was the third time in just the past year.

Online sales spiked 60 percent to $73.6 million, said the firm, as earnings grew for the company year over year for a more than 26 percent gain to $1.40, beating the Street by three pennies. That came as net sales grew by 24 percent, tied in part to what Ulta Beauty said were the online gains and traction in its loyalty program.

Same-store sales were up year over year, compounding growth seen in the third quarter a year ago, when those sales grew by 12.8 percent. Breaking down the latest tally, the transaction growth came in at 11 percent, with nearly 6 percent gains in average tickets.

Looking at the forward guidance, total sales should increase by as much as the low 20 percent range, whereas previously management had said that sales would grow by a mid-teens rate.

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