Dillard's 1Q Earnings Up 24 Percent to $95 Million

Dillard's Inc. of Little Rock on Thursday reported first-quarter net income of $95 million, up about 24 percent from about $77 million during the same quarter last year.

The department store chain also report a 5 percent increase in same-store sales during the quarter.

"We are happy to report a very strong start to 2012 with our seventh consecutive quarter of increased same store sales as well as record setting earnings and earnings per share performances," Dillard's CEO William T. Dillard II said in a news release.

For the quarter, net sales were $1.549 billion compared to net sales of $1.469 billion during the same time last year. Net sales include the operations of the company's construction business, CDI Contractors LLC of Little Rock.

Excluding CDI, merchandise sales reached $1.522 billion compared to $1.456 billion during the same time last year.

Dillard's also said that during the quarter it announced the upcoming closure of its 70,000-SF Hutchinson Mall location in Hutchinson, Kan. The store is expected to close during the second quarter.

As of April 28, Dillard's operated 287 Dillard's locations and 17 clearance centers spanning 29 states. Total square footage was 52.5 million.