Citi Trends’ Q1 Sales Surge Fueled By Curated Shopping Experience

Curated Merchandise, Shopping Experience Fuels Citi Trends’ Q1 Topline Performance

Citi Trends, a clothing, accessories and home trends retailer that runs nearly 600 stores in 33 states, reported that its first-quarter total sales surged by approximately 146 percent, according to a Tuesday (May 25) announcement.

Citi Trends reported that comparable-store sales surged by 142 percent, marking the seventh straight quarter of “positive open-only comparable store sales.” In addition, the retailer reported that gross margin surged by 1,530 basis points to 42.6 percent, significantly up from a 27.3 percent gross margin in Q1 2020. It reported an operating margin of 13.7 percent.

All in, Citi Trends posted $3.23 in earnings per diluted share on $285.4 million in total sales for the first quarter of 2021.

“Our robust, broad-based topline performance is attributed to our differentiated business model that continues to meet the needs of our customers through our highly curated merchandise across our six ‘CITIs,’ combined with a unique and compelling shopping experience that we look to amplify even further,” Citi Trends CEO David Makuen said in the announcement. “Looking ahead, we feel very good about our overall positioning for the rest of fiscal 2021 and beyond.”

Citi Trends also reported that it bought back roughly 537,500 shares of its common stock at an aggregate cost of around $45.5 million in the first quarter.

The news comes as Citi Trends reported that its total sales surged by 77.2 percent in the first quarter through April 3, 2021. In an April 14 press release, Makuen said the company’s first-quarter topline performance through April 3 exceeded the firm’s expectations. “Our positive momentum has been driven by the loyalty of our existing customer base as well as the attraction of new customers, the strength of our brand and our on-trend assortment, combined with the federal government stimulus that started during the third week of March,” Makuen added. In addition, Citi Trends reported that comparable-store sales for the first quarter through April 3, 2021 soared by 74.5 percent.