Borders Group reports drop in income because of one-time charge


Friday, March 16th 2001, 12:00 am
By: News On 6



ANN ARBOR, Mich. (AP) _ Book retailer Borders Group Inc. said its net income for the fourth quarter dropped 48 percent because of costs related to its Internet operations and subsidiary WaldenBooks.

Ann Arbor-based Borders reported earnings of $51.1 million, or 64 cents per share for the quarter ended Jan. 28, compared with $98.5 million, or $1.23 per share, the same time a year ago.

Without the one-time charge of $47.6 million, the company reported net income of $98.7, or $1.23 a share, compared with $98.9 million, or $.121 a share, a year ago.

Borders' performance was 1 cent per share higher than Wall Street analysts' consensus estimate for the quarter, the Ann Arbor-based book and music retailer said.

Consolidated sales, including domestic Borders superstores, international operations, Waldenbooks and Borders.com, totaled $1.19 billion for the quarter ending Jan. 28. Sales a year earlier came to $1.07 billion.

For the fiscal year, Borders earned $267 million, or $1.21 per share, up 3 percent from fiscal 1999. A 14-percent increase in Borders superstore sales helped drive consolidated sales to a record $3.24 billion, up 10.2 percent from fiscal 1999.

Quarterly and yearly earnings did not include one-time charges and costs of discontinuing the All Wound Up toy store division, Borders said.

Borders stock gained 9 cents to close at $15.29 per share Thursday on the New York Stock Exchange.

Borders projects earnings of $1.38 to $1.40 per share, excluding one-time charges, for its 2001 fiscal year. The projection is based in part on completion of a special order and online book fulfillment agreement with Ingram Book Group.

The Ingram agreement is expected to result in a one-time, after-tax charge of between $15 million and $20 million in the first quarter, Borders said.

Borders employs 30,000 people worldwide and operates 335 Borders domestic superstores, 14 international Borders stores, 31 Books etc. locations, 869 Waldenbooks stores and Borders.com.