February 20, 2012, 1:06 PM

The web grows but little else for Build-A-Bear in 2011

E-commerce grew 9.1%, while total sales were flat.

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2011 web sales topped $13 million for Build-A-Bear.

Growth in web sales was about the only good news Build-A-Bear Inc. reported in its 2011 year end financials.

For the year ended Jan. 1, Build-A-Bear, No. 494 in the Internet Retailer Top 500 Guide, reported:

  • Web sales increased 9.1% to $13.2 million from $12.1 million in 2010.
  • Total sales were flat at about $387 million.
  • Comparable-store sales decreased 2.1%.
  • Net loss of $17 million, compared with net income of $104,000 in the prior year

The web accounted for 3.4% of total sales compared with 3.1% in the prior year.

“While our annual net retail sales were essentially flat with the prior year, I am disappointed to report a decrease in our fourth quarter sales after the increases we achieved in the second and third quarters,” says CEO Maxine Clark. “Our key holiday products tied into major theatrical releases, a strategy that has been highly successful for us in the past. However, the films underperformed at the box office, which led to lower consumer demand and negatively impacted our fourth quarter sales and earnings.”

For the fourth quarter:

  • E-commerce sales increased 3.6% to $5.8 million from $5.6 million in Q4 2010
  • Total sales decreased year over year 5% to $117.1 million from $123.2 million.
  • Comparable-store sales decreased 4.9.
  • Net loss was $9 million compared to net income of $8.3 million in Q4 2010.

The web accounted for 5.0% of total sales compared with 4.5% in the prior year.

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