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Ulta Beauty Q1 Results Beat Street View, Raises Outlook; Shares Up 4%

Beauty retailer Ulta Beauty Inc. (ULTA) on Thursday posted a profit for the first quarter, a turnaround from a loss last year, as revenues surged over 65%. Moving ahead, the company raised its outlook for fiscal year 2021.

The company now expects earnings per share of $11.50 to $11.95 for full year 2021, up from prior forecast of $8.85 to $9.30. Net sales are now expected between $7.7 billion and $7.8 billion, up from the earlier announced $7.2 billion and $7.3 billion. On average, 30 analysts polled by Thomson Reuters expect the company to report earnings of $9.85 per share on revenues of $7.41 billion in fiscal 2021.

Comparable sales are now anticipated between 23%-25% from the earlier 15%-17% for the full year.

For the first quarter, the company posted net income of $230.29 million or $4.10 per share, compared to net loss of $78.51 million or $1.39 per share in the same period last year. On average, 27 analysts projected earnings of $1.93 per share in the quarter.

Revenues climbed to $1.94 billion from $1.17 billion a year ago while analysts were looking for revenues of $1.64 billion in the period.

The company said the sales growth was driven largely by improving consumer confidence, government stimulus payments and the easing of COVID-19 restrictions.

Comparable sales, or sales for stores open at least 14 months, including stores temporarily closed due to COVID-19, and e-commerce sales, increased 65.9% compared to a decrease of 35.3% last year.

Commenting on the results, President Dave Kimbell said, "As increasing consumer confidence, the relaxation of restrictions, and a desire for newness drive increased engagement with the beauty category, our differentiated model, combined with our ongoing efforts to create meaningful guest connections, position us well to lead through the category recovery."

The stock ended Thursday's trade at $328.36, up $0.87 or 0.27% on the NYSE. In after-market trade, the stock is trading $15.09 or 4% higher to touch $343.45.

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