September 5, 2002, 12:00 AM

August web, catalog sales rise at Jos. Bank, web sales are flat at Spiegel

Combined catalog/Internet sales in August rose 11.3% year-to-year at Jos. A. Bank while web sales were flat at the Spiegel Group.

With a boost from sales of shirts, suits and sportswear, combined catalog and Internet sales in August rose 11.3% year-to-year at men’s clothing retailer Jos. A. Bank Clothiers Inc. For the first seven months of its fiscal year, combined catalog and Internet sales rose 27.5% "We have had an outstanding start to our fall season," said CEO Robert N. Wildrick.

The retailer said total sales for August increased 20.3% to $14.3 million from $11.9 million in the same month last year, while same-store sales increased 14.6%. For the first seven months of the fiscal year, total sales increased 15.7% to $121.9 million, up from $105.4 million for the same period last year, while same-store sales rose 5.6%.

Jos. A. Bank sells through 147 stores in 29 states. Its web site is at JosBank.com.

The Spiegel Group said its August e-commerce sales were even with a year ago, though total direct sales, which include catalogs, declined 25%. The company`s retail web sites include eddiebauer.com, newport-news.com and spiegel.com. Overall sales declined 21% to $149.6 million from $188.7 million.

Spiegel attributed an 18% drop in year-to-year August Eddie Bauer sales to "significantly lower" clearance activity stemming from better inventory control as well as lower store traffic. It said a new brand strategy at Eddie Bauer that emphasizes its outdoor heritage will "engage customers on an emotional basis" in a vertically integrated messaging campaign that begins this week in its stores, catalogues and on the web.

It also noted that lower overall year-to-year August sales at Newport News (down 26%) and Spiegel Catalog (down 33%) were partly the result of a reduction in the number of catalogs and more restrictive financing policies in its private-label credit card program.

 

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