Seattle-based e-retailer Zulily Tuesday reported a Q1 revenue miss that bettered last year’s Q1 report by 29% but badly missed expectations; revenue for the quarter was $306.6 million but expectations were for $313.5 million.
The company said that the second quarter would continue the slide, with revenue somewhere between $285 million to $300 million, also well below expectations of closer to $361.7 million. The retailer says revenues for the year will reach some $1.3 billion to $1.4 billion, while Wall Street analysts were looking for $1.5 billion.
Zulily also announced the appointment of Brian Swartz as SVP and CFO. Swartz, who comes from Apollo Education Group, will join the company June 1.
In announcing his move to Zulily, Brian Swartz noted “Zulily has been incredibly disruptive in the e-commerce space, and I'm excited to join a company that has fundamentally changed the way people shop.” But Zulily of late has been more disrupted than disrupter.
Fatigue with the flash-sales model that Zulily employs seems to be moving on to extreme weariness, and other aspects of the model — like its supply chain and membership approaches — are now looking like liabilities.
While other retailers are speeding up their supply chains, for example, Zulily, like many flash-sale sites, has waited to buy merchandise until orders for it came in. That’s changing, but it’s unclear how much or how effective the changes will be.