Ulta Salon +8.5% AH on FQ1 beat, strong top-line guidance

Ulta Salon (ULTA) expects FQ2 revenue of $706M-$717M and EPS of $0.78-$0.82 vs. a consensus of $704M and $0.82. Comparable store sales are expected to rise 5%-7% Y/Y.

FY14 (ends Jan. '15) guidance for 4%-6% comp growth, mid-teens EPS growth, and $100M+ in free cash flow is being reiterated.

Comparable store sales rose 8.7% in FQ1 (down slightly from FQ4's 9.2%), aided by a 72.3% increase in e-commerce comps.

21 stores were opened during the quarter, raising total store count to 696. 100 net new openings are expected in FY14.

Gross margin was 34.5%, +70 bps Q/Q and -50 bps Y/Y. SG&A spend was 22.8% of revenue, same as a year ago.

Expectations were depressed going into earnings.

FQ1 results, PR

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