Neiman Marcus on Tuesday reported that third quarter total revenues fell to $1.06 billion from $1.17 billion a year ago.
Comparable sales fell 1.5% year over year, after a 7.3% gain a year ago, according to a company press release. Adjusted EBITDA reached $126.5 million compared to adjusted EBITDA of $143.8 million for the third quarter a year ago.
Net loss reached $31.2 million, topping the year-ago period's $19.9 million net loss.
Neiman Marcus has been hampered by a debt load of some $4.5 billion, but executives announced that it's garnered some relief, in the form of a deal with lenders that extends term loan maturities by a couple of years to 2023 and 2024.
CEO Geoffroy van Raemdonck told analysts during a conference call Tuesday that the department store is focused on a loyal customer base local to its operations and so is less dependent on tourism than other retailers that in recent reports have cited a dropoff in Chinese visitors to the U.S. as a drag on sales.
More detrimental to Neiman was a series of merchandising missteps, stemming in part from slower fashion cycles from certain designers, he said. "Over the last 12 to 18 months in luxury, the brands with a really strong point of view have done very very well," he said, noting that the retailer's customer base, while loyal, has high expectations for an exclusive assortment and personalized service. "That's really the way to compete ... giving the customer what they want in a more unique manner."
In addition to its flagship stores, Neiman Marcus runs Bergdorf Goodman, Last Call, Horchow, Cusp and Mytheresa — the last the subject of a tussle in recent months with lenders over the transfer of the European e-commerce business, which the company is contemplating selling. On Tuesday, van Raemdonck said that its Bergdorf Goodman brand and website hold excellent potential for growth.