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American Apparel CEO Dov Charney hopped up to say hello to the crowd at the ICR XChange this morning and then turned the show over to Adrian Kowalewski, who was just named chief financial officer in December.
Here's what Adrian had to say about the LA-based maker of T-shirts, sweats, socks, underwear and other fashion basic apparel. The company is a supplier to the industry, and, increasingly, a retail competitor.
Kind of a surprise: American Apparel moved into malls with 12 leases it picked up from bankrupt Sharper Image. "Those (shops) are doing well," Adrian said. Those consumers went to a mall and "choose to shop at American Apparel."
Store comps: In Q4, the trend was down because of the economy. The slowdown came from its U.S. retail segment - about 39 stores. American Apparel comfortable with this. (Comps in 2008 were 22% vs. 29% in 2007.)
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