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Martha at Kmart slides in Q2

Troy, MI — Due to Kmart's bankruptcy and store closings, sales of Martha Stewart Everyday products at Kmart declined by 21 percent on a comp basis, and 38 percent on a total store basis, executives said during Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia's second quarter conference call.

Sharon Patrick, president and ceo, MSLO, added that on a comp-store, comp-category basis, MSE product had a "modest" drop of 10 percent, which excludes live plants, which were dropped from the 2003 line. The overall 9 percent decline to date was the result of softer sales of certain housewares items due to competitive pricing, and, because of the inclement weather during the spring, patio furniture.

Sales have improved for the more recent period of July 1 to Aug. 2, increasing approximately 12 percent on a comp-store, comp-category basis, of which one of the largest contributors is the improvement in patio furniture.

"We should note that these swings in sales performance do not materially impact our full-year revenue or profitability numbers as, in accordance with our Kmart contract, we are expected to earn royalties for the full year at guaranteed minimal levels," she said. In addition, the MSE brand label and product is set to launch at Sears Canada next month, in a program of 2,300 skus.

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