Posts $400M Q1 loss, revenue totals $3.09B

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Hudson's Bay Co. had said then it would keep less than a quarter of the 11-story building for a Lord & Taylor store.

The Lord & Taylor flagship was supposed to shrink to 150,000 square feet next year - but now the oldest department store company in the USA is disappearing entirely from Fifth Avenue after 104 years in its present location. She said the 13 new Hudson's Bay stores in the Netherlands, that banner's first foray outside of Canada, had not met internal targets.

Helena Foulkes, Hudson's Bay CEO since February 19, said as the company is "dedicated to evolving our experience and merchandise assortment to best meet customer expectations and shopping preferences, we will take advantage of having a smaller footprint to rethink the model and focus on our digital opportunities". This customer-focused mindset will dictate how we think about key functions of the business, and I see opportunity to dramatically improve our marketing and digital operations while also refining company wide processes that impact our end to end customer experience.

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Hudson's Bay, which also owns GALERIA Kaufhof in Europe, is cutting costs and boosting efficiencies as it wrestles with a run of earnings disappointments as consumers shift away from department stores to e-commerce and off-price offerings. Earlier this week, HBC said it was selling the discount online flash sales site Gilt Group to RueLaLa after only two years.

"It looked like pretty lousy results, but the market may be taking some encouragement that they're retrenching more rapidly", said Brian Madden, portfolio manager at Goodreid Investment Counsel in Toronto, who has avoided buying HBC shares. Across the company's brands, which include Saks Fifth Avenue, Saks OFF 5th and Home Outfitters, Hudson's Bay has reported losses-again. Walmart announced last November that Lord & Taylor will have a flagship store on Walmart.com.

"Exiting this iconic space reflects Lord & Taylor's increasing focus on its digital opportunity and HBC's commitment to improving profitability", Hudson's Bay said in a press release announcing its first-quarter results Tuesday.

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Saks Fifth Avenue's troubled experiment with online flash sales is ending nearly as abruptly as it began.

"We're excited about the real estate that we own in Europe and the potential". The loss amounted to $1.70 per share compared to $1.21 per share in the same quarter a year ago.

On a normalized basis, HBC says its loss per share for the quarter amounted to $1.22 compared with a normalized loss of $1.15 per share a year ago.

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Analysts on average had expected a loss of 87 cents per share, according to Thomson Reuters Eikon. "But as I said before, everything's on the table in terms of focusing on driving improved profitability for the business". Companywide, top-line sales increased 1% to $3.1 billion. That compares to a 1 per cent drop in the Toronto Stock Exchange benchmark, but Hudson's Bay shares have recovered 32 per cent since their March trough.

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