February 26, 2010, 12:00 AM

Gap plans to expand web sales abroad in 2010, after a solid 2009

Gap’s web sales increased 8.7% in 2009 and 3.1% in the fourth quarter. Next up: launching e-commerce in Canada and Europe.

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Having finished 2009 with decent growth online, Gap Inc. is making 2010 the year for international e-commerce expansion.

For the year ended Jan. 30, 2009, Gap, No. 25 in the Internet Retailer Top 500 Guide, reported:

  • An increase of 8.7% in web sales to $1.12 billion from $1.03 billion in 2008.
  • Total revenue declined 2.3% to $14.20 billion from $14.53 billion.
  • The web accounted for 7.9% of total sales compared with 7.1% in 2008.
  • Comparable-store sales decreased 3.0%.
  • Net income rose year over year 13.8% to $1.1 billion from $967 million.
In October, Gap announced plans to open new web stores in 2010 for its Gap, Old Navy and Banana Republic brands in Canada and e-commerce sites for Gap and Banana Republic in the United Kingdom. The retailer plans to begin filling orders by fall. Gap will pursue its international web expansion in markets where there are many fashion-conscious consumers, such as Canada, the U.K. and Italy, CEO Glenn Murphy told analysts on the chain retailer’s year-end earnings call Thursday. “We are going to come out very strong in the Canadian market and we will open up with a business based in London but it is going to be a European site,” Murphy told analysts. “It will serve 10 countries in Europe. That is a big move for us.”

In the fourth quarter, Gap also reported

  • An increase of 3.1% in web sales to $329 million from $319 million in Q4 of 2008.
  • Total revenue increased 3.9% to $4.24 billion from $4.08 billion.
  • The web accounted for 7.8% of total sales, the same as in Q4 2008.
  • Comparable-store sales increased 2.0%.
  • Net income rose year over year 44.9% to $352 million from $243 million.


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