The holiday spending slump hit Trans World Entertainment, whose exposure to a softer sales environment was worsened by a dearth of strong new music and video releases and a smaller store footprint.
The Guilderland “all entertainment” retailer reported a 19 percent total sales decline for the nine-week period that ended Jan. 5, compared to the same period of 2006. Sales during that period fell to $378 million from $469 million.
“Holiday sales were well below expectations,” said trans World Chairman and Chief Executive Robert Higgins said in a Thursday conference call with analysts.
On a comparable store basis, sales for the five-week period declined 13 percent and 12 percent for the nine-week period ending Jan. 5.
The company operated 14 percent fewer stores during that nine-week period, compared to a year earlier. It is holding liquidation sales at 138 stores, including the Coconuts Music at Stuyvesant Plaza in Guilderland.
The poor performance during the crucial fourth quarter, which has accounted for up to 40 percent of its business in past years, prompted Trans World to revise its earnings outlook for the year. The company forecast a net loss of $15 million to $20 million for the fiscal year, down from its previous break-even prediction.
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