Mar 15, 2011
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Brown Shoe Q4 profit misses, wholesale division drags

Mar 15, 2011

March 15 - Brown Shoe Co reported a lower-than-expected quarterly profit as costs rose and its wholesale business underperformed, sending its shares down 23.5 percent in early trading.

Brown Shoe
Via Spiga, one of Brown Shoe's brands

A rise in delivery costs and disruption in delivery timings at its wholesale segment -- which accounted for 29 percent of sales in the quarter -- pushed gross profit rates down to 26.6 percent during the quarter from 34.6 percent last year.

The St. Louis-based company, whose brands include Famous Footwear and Naturalizer, earned $3.4 million, or 8 cents per diluted share. Analysts expected a profit of 15 cents a share, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.

Sales rose 6.8 percent to $604.5 million, missing estimates.

The company expects to earn between $1.37-$1.47 a share in 2011, while analysts were expecting a profit of $1.42 a share.

Separately, footwear retailer DSW Inc also missed quarterly earnings estimates.

Brown Shoe shares fell 23.5 percent to $10.95 in early trading on the New York Stock Exchange on Tuesday.

(Reporting by Nivedita Bhattacharjee; Editing by Sriraj Kalluvila)

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