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UNITED STATES

SECURITIES AND EXCHANGE COMMISSION

WASHINGTON, D.C. 20549

 

FORM 10-K

 

(Mark One)

ANNUAL REPORT PURSUANT TO SECTION 13 OR 15(d) OF THE SECURITIES EXCHANGE ACT OF 1934

For the fiscal year ended January 29, 2022 (Fiscal 2021)

OR

TRANSITION REPORT PURSUANT TO SECTION 13 OR 15(d) OF THE SECURITIES EXCHANGE ACT OF 1934 FOR THE TRANSITION PERIOD FROM TO

 

Commission File Number 01-34219

 

 

DESTINATION XL GROUP, INC.

(Exact name of registrant as specified in its charter)

 

 

Delaware

 

04-2623104

(State or other jurisdiction of
incorporation or organization)

 

(IRS Employer

Identification No.)

 

555 Turnpike Street, Canton, MA

 

02021

(Address of principal executive offices)

 

(Zip Code)

(781) 828-9300

(Registrant’s telephone number, including area code)

Securities registered pursuant to Section 12(b) of the Act:

Title of each class

Trading Symbols(s)

Name of each exchange on which registered

Common Stock, par value $0.01 per share

DXLG

The Nasdaq Stock Market LLC

 

 

 

 

Securities registered pursuant to Section 12(g) of the Act:

None.

Indicate by check mark if the registrant is a well-known seasoned issuer, as defined in Rule 405 of the Securities Act. Yes ☐ No

Indicate by check mark if the registrant is not required to file reports pursuant to Section 13 or Section 15(d) of the Act. Yes ☐ No

Indicate by check mark whether the registrant (1) has filed all reports required to be filed by Section 13 or 15(d) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 during the preceding 12 months (or for such shorter period that the registrant was required to file such reports), and (2) has been subject to such filing requirements for the past 90 days. Yes ☒ No ☐

Indicate by check mark whether the registrant has submitted electronically every Interactive Data File required to be submitted pursuant to Rule 405 of Regulation S-T (§232.405 of this chapter) during the preceding 12 months (or for such shorter period that the registrant was required to submit such files). Yes ☒ No ☐

Indicate by check mark whether the registrant is a large accelerated filer, an accelerated filer, a non-accelerated filer, a smaller reporting company, or emerging growth company. See the definitions of "large accelerated filer," "accelerated filer," "non-accelerated filer," "smaller reporting company" and “emerging growth company” in Rule 12b-2 of the Exchange Act.

 

Large accelerated filer

Accelerated filer

Non-accelerated filer

Smaller reporting company

 

Emerging growth company

If an emerging growth company, indicate by check mark if the registrant has elected not to use the extended transition period for complying with any new or revised financial accounting standards provided pursuant to section 13(a) of the Exchange Act. ☐

Indicate by check mark whether the registrant has filed a report on and attestation to its management’s assessment of the effectiveness of its internal control over financial reporting under Section 404(b) of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act (15 U.S.C. 7262(b)) by the registered public accounting firm that prepared or issued its audit report.

Indicate by check mark whether the registrant is a shell company (as defined in Rule 12b-2 of the Act). Yes No ☒

As of July 30, 2021, the aggregate market value of the Common Stock held by non-affiliates of the registrant was approximately $199.9 million, based on the last reported sale price on that date. Shares of Common Stock held by each executive officer and director and by certain persons who own 10% or more of the outstanding Common Stock have been excluded on the basis that such persons may be deemed to be affiliates. This determination of affiliate status is not necessarily determinative for other purposes.

The registrant had 64,301,152 shares of Common Stock, $0.01 par value, outstanding as of March 15, 2022.


DOCUMENTS INCORPORATED BY REFERENCE

Portions of the Proxy Statement for the 2022 Annual Meeting of Stockholders are incorporated by reference into Part III.

 


 

DESTINATION XL GROUP, INC.

 

 

Index to Annual Report on Form 10-K

Year Ended January 29, 2022

 

 

 

 

 

Page

 

 

 

PART I

 

 

 

Item 1.

 

Business

 

4

 

Item 1A.

 

Risk Factors

 

13

 

Item 1B.

 

Unresolved Staff Comments

 

19

 

Item 2.

 

Properties

 

20

 

Item 3.

 

Legal Proceedings

 

21

 

Item 4.

 

Mine Safety Disclosures

 

21

 

 

 

PART II

 

 

 

Item 5.

 

Market for Registrant’s Common Equity, Related Stockholder Matters and Issuer Purchases of Equity Securities

 

22

 

Item 6.

 

Reserved

 

23

 

Item 7.

 

Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations

 

24

 

Item 7A.

 

Quantitative and Qualitative Disclosures About Market Risk

 

32

 

Item 8.

 

Financial Statements and Supplementary Data

 

34

 

Item 9.

 

Changes in and Disagreements with Accountants on Accounting and Financial Disclosure

 

61

 

Item 9A.

 

Controls and Procedures

 

61

 

Item 9B.

 

Other Information

 

63

 

Item 9C.

 

Disclosure Regarding Foreign Jurisdictions that Prevent Inspections

 

63

 

 

 

PART III

 

 

 

Item 10.

 

Directors, Executive Officers and Corporate Governance

 

64

 

Item 11.

 

Executive Compensation

 

64

 

Item 12.

 

Security Ownership of Certain Beneficial Owners and Management and Related Stockholder Matters

 

64

 

Item 13.

 

Certain Relationships and Related Transactions, and Director Independence

 

64

 

Item 14.

 

Principal Accounting Fees and Services

 

64

 

 

 

PART IV

 

 

 

Item 15.

 

Exhibits and Financial Statement Schedules

 

64

 

Item 16.

 

Form 10-K Summary

 

64

 

 

 

Signatures

 

69

 

 

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PART I.

Certain statements contained in this Annual Report on Form 10-K (this “Annual Report”) constitute “forward-looking statements,” including forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. In some cases, forward-looking statements can be identified by the use of forward-looking terminology such as “may,” “will,” “estimate,” “intend,” “plan,” “continue,” “believe,” “expect” or “anticipate” or the negatives thereof, variations thereon or similar terminology. The forward-looking statements contained in this Annual Report are generally located under the headings “Business” and “Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations,” but may be found in other locations as well, and include statements regarding the continuing impact of the coronavirus pandemic and its variants on the Company’s business in fiscal 2022, particularly related to the continued impact from disruptions in the supply chain and inflationary pressures, the ability to manage its gross margin rate and inventory, and the geopolitical instability from Russia's invasion of Ukraine. These forward-looking statements generally relate to plans and objectives for future operations and are based upon management’s reasonable estimates of future results or trends. The forward-looking statements in this Annual Report should not be regarded as a representation by us or any other person that the objectives or plans of the Company will be achieved. Numerous factors could cause our actual results to differ materially from such forward-looking statements, including, without limitation, risks relating to the execution of our corporate strategy and ability to grow our market share, and those risks and uncertainties set forth below under Item 1A, Risk Factors. Readers are encouraged to review these risks and uncertainties carefully.

These forward-looking statements speak only as of the date of the document in which they are made. We disclaim any obligation or undertaking to provide any updates or revisions to any forward-looking statement to reflect any change in its expectations or any change in events, conditions, or circumstances in which the forward-looking statement is based.

COVID-19 Impact on our Business in Fiscal 2021

The COVID-19 pandemic and its variants continued to impact our business and results of operations in fiscal 2021. While we saw significant improvement in our business from fiscal 2020, substantial uncertainty remains regarding the duration of the pandemic, the potential impact of new variants, continued disruptions in the supply chain, labor shortages and the long-term effect of the pandemic on the global economy, and overall consumer demand and spending. The Company has included discussion under Item 1A, Risk Factors, and under Item 7, Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations, with regards to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on its financial results in fiscal 2021 and the continued risks that COVID-19 may have on our financial results for fiscal 2022.

Item 1. Business

Destination XL Group, Inc., together with its subsidiaries (the “Company”), is the leading specialty retailer of big & tall men’s apparel with retail locations throughout the United States. We operate under the trade names of Destination XL®, DXL®, DXL Men’s Apparel, DXL outlets, Casual Male XL® and Casual Male XL outlets. At January 29, 2022, we operated 220 DXL retail stores, 16 DXL outlet stores, 35 Casual Male XL retail stores, 19 Casual Male XL outlet stores, and a digital business, including an e-commerce site at www.dxl.com, a mobile site m.destinationXL.com and mobile app. Unless the context indicates otherwise, all references to “we,” “our,” “ours,” “us” and “the Company” refer to Destination XL Group, Inc. and our consolidated subsidiaries. We refer to our fiscal years ended January 29, 2022, January 30, 2021 and February 1, 2020 as “fiscal 2021,” “fiscal 2020” and “fiscal 2019,” respectively.

OUR INDUSTRY

We define the big & tall men’s clothing market as starting at a waist size of 38” and greater, as well as tops sized 1XL and greater. Growth in this segment historically has been driven by rapidly changing market demographics. We believe that we can increase our market share by catering to the broader target market, attracting customers from various income, age and lifestyle segments and offering the widest selection of sizes and styles that fit well.

We believe the total core addressable market for big & tall men’s clothing and shoes is approximately $10 billion. We determined this core market, defined as sizes XXL+ and waist sizes 42”+, with assistance from The NPD Group.

HISTORY

Our Company was incorporated in the State of Delaware in 1976 under the name "Kara Enterprises, Inc." and subsequently did business under the name "Designs, Inc." Until fiscal 1995, we operated exclusively in Levi Strauss & Co. branded apparel mall and outlet stores. In May 2002, we acquired the Casual Male business from Casual Male Corp. at a bankruptcy court-ordered auction. At the time of the acquisition, Casual Male was the largest specialty retailer of men’s clothing in the big & tall market in the United States. As a result of the acquisition, on August 8, 2002, we changed our name to “Casual Male Retail Group, Inc.” In fiscal 2004, we

 

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acquired the Rochester Clothing stores. Through fiscal 2010, we catered to customers through our three store formats, from our value-oriented customer (Casual Male XL outlets) to our luxury-oriented customer (Rochester Clothing stores).

In fiscal 2010, we launched a new store concept, Destination XL (“DXL”). The DXL store concept offers our customers an extensive assortment of products, ranging from value-oriented to luxury-oriented with an increased presence of name brands, without having to shop multiple stores. In addition to offering our customers a wide assortment, we also wanted to provide them with a unique shopping experience. We are focused on providing outstanding customer service through our DXL stores, with larger fitting rooms and professional, trained associates providing personal attention. With the initial success of this store format, we made a similar change to our e-commerce business in fiscal 2011 when we launched our DestinationXL.com website (now dxl.com). In fiscal 2019, we closed our five remaining Rochester Clothing stores.

OUR BUSINESS

We operate as an omni-channel retailer of big & tall men’s clothing and shoes. Through our multiple brands, which include both branded apparel and private-label, we provide a premium, personalized shopping experience, whether in-store or digitally, with a broad range of merchandise at varying price points, catering from the value-oriented customer to the luxury customer. Our objective is to appeal to all of our customers by providing a good, better, best array of product assortments in all primary lifestyles with multiple and convenient ways to shop.

What is unique about our business is our proprietary fit, our ability to manage an array of sizes, and optimizing our in-stock position throughout each season. Our best-selling pant has 58 size combinations and a unique specification as compared to an average retailer who may only have 15 different size combinations. We maintain a consolidated inventory across all channels that enables us to manage our in-stock position of all sizes effectively, ultimately improving customer service. Moreover, our planning and allocation methodologies, with respect to store assortment planning, help to optimize each location’s market potential without excessive inventory levels.

Our DXL retail stores, e-commerce site, dxl.com, and mobile app cater to all income demographics and offer our customers merchandise to fit a variety of lifestyles from casual to business, young to mature, in all price ranges and in all large sizes from XL and up. In addition, we also offer a selection of shoes in sizes 10W to 18W on our website at dxl.com. Our Casual Male XL retail stores primarily carry moderate-priced branded and private-label casual sportswear and dresswear. We also operate Casual Male XL outlets and DXL outlets for our value-oriented customers. Through digital marketplaces, we are able to extend our reach, by providing a select offering of our merchandise to new customers who may not be current DXL customers.

BUSINESS STRATEGY

The structural changes to our business model and the digital transformative work we have accomplished is driving our customers to engage with our brand in new and meaningful ways which together create a bright future for DXL. We strive to deliver a differentiated experience that we believe will resonate with big and tall guys everywhere and our business strategy remains focused on driving initiatives in marketing, technology, and merchandising.

In fiscal 2022, our key initiatives include the following:

Digital growth. We have seen substantive growth in our direct business over the past two years and we believe that this shows the sustainability of our digital transformation and our ability to stand out as an omni-channel retail company. This digital growth is not just limited to our DXL.com website and mobile app lead; we have seen growth from third-party marketplaces. We offer our B&T Essentials on Amazon Marketplace, specifically aimed at the value-oriented consumer. We believe these additional avenues will attract a new customer to DXL and increase our brand awareness. We look to further build upon these objectives in fiscal 2022.
Marketing initiatives. We have executed a marketing strategy that is responsive to changes in customer shopping habits and behaviors through CRM segmentation, unique personas and personalization of digital interaction such as one-to-one marketing email messaging. Our focus in fiscal 2022 will be building brand awareness to achieve greater market share, the acquisition of new customers, and investing in customer reactivation. For fiscal 2021, our new-to-file increased 27% as compared to fiscal 2019. We want to build off of that growth in fiscal 2022. Our marketing efforts will continue to be primarily digitally-driven, as we continue to develop a more personalized one-on-one connection with our customers.
Merchandising initiatives. Over the past few years, we have narrowed our assortment, reducing the number of brands we carry and instead focusing on the development of the assortments and exclusivity. Beginning in the spring of fiscal 2022, we will be adding merchandise from Nautica and vineyard vines to our existing list of exclusive brands. We are aiming to add even more brand exclusivity to our current merchandise selection, allowing us to differentiate ourselves within the big and

 

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tall market. Since the latter half of fiscal 2020, we have shifted to a more full-price messaging with fewer merchandise discounts, separating us from other retailers by focusing on our proprietary fit, exclusive merchandise selection and the unique DXL shopping experience.

MERCHANDISE

We offer our customers a broad assortment of apparel that is appropriate to our diverse customer base. Regardless of our customers’ age, socioeconomic status, or lifestyle preference, we are able to assemble a wardrobe to fit their apparel needs. We offer such assortments in both private-label product and a wide array of brand-name labels. With over 6,000 styles available, we carry tops in sizes up to 8XL and 8XLT, bottoms with waist sizes 38” to 70”, and shoes in sizes 10W to 18W. Big and tall is all we do.

What sets us apart from our competitors is our proprietary fit. We are different because our fit is different. Our merchandise is not just an extension of regular sizes. The fit is built from unique specifications for every size and style, with specific design features for the big and tall customer.

Our stores are merchandised to showcase entire outfits by lifestyle, including traditional, active, modern and denim. This format allows us to merchandise key items and seasonal goods in prominent displays and makes coordinating outfits easier for the customer while encouraging multi-item purchases. This lifestyle layout also allows us to manage store space and product assortment effectively in each market to target local demographics. The key item strategy is also fully integrated by lifestyle, allowing us to focus on merchandise presentation and offer our customers a compelling value proposition.

Merchandise assortments in our DXL stores are organized not only by lifestyle but, within each lifestyle, the assortments are shown in a “good,” “better” and “best” visual presentation. With the “best” merchandise assortments featured most prominently in the DXL store, our customers are able to visualize current fashion trends and select their wardrobes within their desired price points in a convenient manner. Our website and select DXL stores also offer certain “luxury” brands.

We carry over 100 well-known national brands (“branded apparel”) as well as a number of our own private-label lines within our “good,” “better” and “best” price points. The penetration of branded apparel in a specific DXL store can range from 39% to 80%, depending on several factors, but on average, approximately half of the assortment is branded apparel.

Several of the national brands that we carry, in sizes 2XL and above, are sold exclusively by us in our stores and on our website and may be available on the brand’s website. In January 2022, we announced that we were adding Nautica and vineyard vines to our list of exclusive brands for Spring 2022. In addition to our exclusive brands, we also work with several other national brands to offer a unique, curated merchandise assortment, in sizes 2XL and above, that are exclusively sold in our stores and on our website and are not available from the brand’s own website. These offerings are a subset of the larger merchandise offering that we carry for these respective brands.

Value-Priced Apparel -“Good” Merchandise

For our value-oriented customers, we carry Champion, Lee, Wrangler and Reebok. Within our product assortment for Champion, we offer exclusive styles specially curated for our customers. In addition, we carry several value-priced private label lines:

Harbor Bay® was our first proprietary brand and it is a traditional line that continues to represent a significant portion of our business, specifically in terms of our core basic merchandise.
Gold Series™ is our core performance offering of tailored-related separates, blazers, dress slacks, dress shirts and neckwear that blends comfort features such as stretch, stain resistance and wrinkle-free fabrics with basic wardrobe essentials.
Synrgy™ targets the customer looking for a contemporary/modern look.
Oak Hill® is a premier line catering to those customers looking for slightly more style and quality than our Harbor Bay line but still in a traditional lifestyle.
True Nation® is a denim-inspired line consisting of vintage-screen t-shirts and wovens and is geared towards our younger customers.
Society of One® is an activewear brand that offers versatile styling options and is grounded by performance technology.

Moderate-Priced Apparel -“Better” Merchandise

We offer our customer an extensive selection of quality sportswear and dress clothing at moderate prices carrying well-known brands such as: Cutter & Buck®, Levi's®, Columbia, Carhartt®, and Jockey®. Our exclusive brands in this price range in O’Neill®, Nautica® and Nautica Jeans®, Adidas Golf® and vineyard vines®. Within our product assortment for Callaway®, Lacoste®, Majestic and Tommy Bahama® we also offer exclusive styles specially curated for our customers.

 

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Higher-End Fashion Apparel -“Best” Merchandise

Within this higher-end price range, we carry a broad selection of quality apparel from well-known branded manufacturers, such as The North Face®, Polo Ralph Lauren®, Jack Victor®, Michael Kors®, and Tallia®. Our exclusive brands in this price range include Brooks Brothers®, JOE’S® Jeans, 7 for all Mankind®, and Robert Barakett®. Within our product assortment for Psycho Bunny®, Lucky and Robert Graham® we also offer exclusive styles specially curated for our customers.

Shoes

Our DXL website offers an assortment of footwear, with a broad selection from casual to formal, in varying price points. We currently have a selection of more than 200 styles of shoes, ranging in sizes from 10W to 18W, including designer brands such as Cole Haan®, Timberland®, Sketchers, New Balance, Reebok and Deerstags.

STORE CHANNEL

DXL Men’s Apparel Stores

At January 29, 2022, we operated 220 DXL retail stores. Our DXL store concept brings all of our brands together in one format. Within this format, we cater to our diverse customer base, with merchandise representing all price points, from our higher-end brands to value-oriented brands, and all lifestyles, from business to denim. The size of our DXL stores averages 7,600 square feet, but since fiscal 2016 we have opened smaller (5,000-6,500 square feet) DXL stores. Because of the smaller size of these stores, they carry a smaller product offering than our other DXL stores but are representative of the “good, better, best” merchandise variety. Our DXL stores are located on real estate that is highly visible, often adjacent to high-performing regional malls or other high-traffic shopping areas.

Our DXL stores offer up to three times the product offering of a Casual Male XL store. Depending on the customers in each respective market, we can adjust the appropriate mix of merchandise, with varying selections from each of our price points, to cater to each demographic market.

Over the past few years, we have rebranded select Casual Male XL retail and outlet stores to the DXL retail and outlet store concept. In many markets, rebranding a Casual Male XL store to a DXL store provides a viable alternative to the more costly endeavor of relocating a Casual Male XL store to new DXL real estate. In addition, the converted stores benefit from DXL advertising. We are actively reviewing opportunities to relocate or convert Casual Male XL stores to DXL and we are reviewing white space opportunities in markets where our store footprint is underpenetrated. We expect to continue to invest in stores over the next several years as we further strengthen the store portfolio.

Casual Male XL Retail Stores

At January 29, 2022, we operated 35 Casual Male XL full-price retail stores, located primarily in strip centers or stand-alone locations. The majority of the merchandise carried in our Casual Male XL stores is moderate-priced basic or fashion-neutral items, such as jeans, casual slacks, t-shirts, polo shirts, dress shirts and suit separates. These stores also carry a full complement of our “better” private label collections. The average Casual Male XL retail store is approximately 3,300 square feet.

DXL Outlet /Casual Male XL Outlet Stores

At January 29, 2022, we operated 16 DXL outlet stores and 19 Casual Male XL outlet stores designed to offer a wide range of casual clothing for the big & tall customer at prices that are generally 20-25% lower than our moderate-priced merchandise. Much of the merchandise in our outlet stores is offered at discounted prices to cater to the value-oriented customer. In addition to private-label and branded merchandise at our “good” price tier, our outlets also carry clearance product obtained from DXL and Casual Male XL stores, offering the outlet customer the ability to purchase branded and fashion product for a reduced price.

The average DXL outlet is approximately 5,000 square feet and the average Casual Male XL outlet store is approximately 3,000 square feet.

DIRECT CHANNEL

Our direct business is a critical channel for growing sales and market share through new customer acquisition and digital engagement of the active file. In the past two years, our direct business grew 45.3% in fiscal 2021 as compared to fiscal 2019 and represented approximately 31.0% of our total retail sales in fiscal 2021, as compared to 23.1% of our retail sales in fiscal 2019. Through our digital efforts and marketplace presence, we are creating brand awareness and attracting a new customer to DXL. For fiscal 2021, our new-to-file increased 27% as compared to fiscal 2019. We believe that this new-to-file growth indicates that our investments in digital marketing and the optimization of our digital infrastructure are resonating with new customers.

 

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We define our direct business as sales that originate online, whether through our website, our app, those initiated online at the store level, our Guest Engagement Center, or through a third-party marketplace. We want to serve our customers wherever and how they want to shop, whether in-person at a store, over the telephone, or online via a computer, smartphone or tablet.

A key to being a successful omni-channel retailer is having the ability to showcase all of our store inventories online, resulting in additional transactions that are initiated online, but are ultimately completed in store. In addition, our stores are able to fulfill an order for an item that is out-of-stock in our warehouse. This capability has not only resulted in incremental sales, but it has also helped us reduce clearance merchandise at the store level and manage margins.

DXL Website and App

Our DXL website and app have been instrumental in our growth over the past two years, with sales from our website and app together increasing 55.3% from fiscal 2019. We continue to see our consumers shift to online shopping helping to drive higher new customer acquisition for the website business.

Digital Sales at Store Level

In support of our omni-channel approach, our store associates use our website to help fulfill our in-store customers’ clothing needs. If a wider selection of a lifestyle, color or size of an item is not available in our store, then our store associates can order the item for our customer online through our direct channel and have it shipped to the store or directly to the customer. Our customers also have the ability to shop-by-store and pick-up in store on the same day.

Digital Marketplaces

We continue to broaden our reach through digital, third-party marketplaces. A large portion of our assortment is available on Amazon.com and Target.com. Digital marketplaces provide us an opportunity to drive awareness, grow our customer base and introduce new customers to our brand.

WHOLESALE CHANNEL

Our wholesale business focuses on the product development, manufacturing and distribution of big and tall product. This initiative allows us to leverage our existing infrastructure, including DXL’s expertise in technical design and global sourcing. Our wholesale business was driven primarily by our relationship with Amazon. Based on several factors, including low margins, volatility in the global supply chain, increasing lead times and the shifting dynamics of the business, the Company and Amazon have agreed to end the wholesale relationship.

MERCHANDISE PLANNING AND ALLOCATION

Our merchandise planning and allocation function is critical to the effective management of our inventory, store assortments, product sizes and overall gross margin profitability. The merchandise planning and allocation team has an array of planning and replenishment tools available to assist in maintaining an appropriate level of inventory, in-stock positions at the stores and for the direct channel, and pre-season planning for product assortments for each store and the direct channel. Additionally, in-season reporting identifies opportunities and challenges in inventory performance. Over the past several years, we have made, and we will continue to make, investments in implementing best practice tools and processes for our merchandise planning and allocation.

Our core merchandise made up approximately 42% of our merchandise assortment in fiscal 2021. Our planning and allocation team estimates quantity and demand several months in advance to optimize gross margin and minimize end-of-season merchandise for all seasonal merchandise. We develop customized assortment strategies by store that accentuate lifestyle preferences for each particular store.

Our merchandising data warehouse provides the merchandising team with standardized reporting for monitoring assortment performance by product category and by store, identifying in-stock positions by size and generally monitoring overall inventory levels relative to selling. At season end, we analyze the overall performance of product categories, overall assortments and specific styles by store to focus on the opportunities and challenges for the next season’s planning cycle.

Utilizing a set of specific universal reporting tools, the merchandise planning and allocation team is able to fulfill their daily, weekly and monthly roles and responsibilities. These reporting tools provide focused and actionable views of the business to optimize the overall assortment by category and by store. We are confident that our inventory performance is optimized by having all members of the merchandise planning and allocation team follow a standardized set of processes with the use of standardized reporting tools.

 

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STORE OPERATIONS

We believe that our store associates are the key to creating the highest quality experience for our customers. The culture in our stores is to be guest centric in an effort to engage and build a relationship with our guests. Our overall goal is to accomplish three key initiatives in our stores. The first is that we strive to build relationships with all of our guests. The second is that we believe our stores need to be clean, neat and organized in an effort to allow the "just-looking" customer to find what he needs with ease. The last component is our stores serving as mini-distribution centers. The majority of our stores are able to fulfill customer orders for product that we may not have in our distribution center. Our associates are well versed in not only the product selection carried in their specific store, but also the product selection carried online. With a point-of-sale system that can access items online for the customer who is physically in the store, our associates are able to fulfill all of their customers’ needs.

Our multi-unit, field management team receives extensive training on recruiting associates who are the correct fit for our stores. All new DXL store management team hires are trained extensively through senior peer trainers throughout the country. We believe having a mix of internal promotes (store manager to Regional Sales Manager) as well as external hires with extensive multi-unit background gives us an inclusive and diverse Regional Sales management team. Regional Vice Presidents give us touch-points in the field in addition to our Regional Sales Managers and store management team to ensure consistency in executing our standards and all programs and processes we deem important to our success.

Each new member of the store management team goes through extensive training with their Regional Sales Manager and a peer Store Manager. We believe our training system, together with monitoring sales metrics to help identify opportunities for further training, will improve sales productivity and strengthen our customer’s brand loyalty.

Our field organization is overseen by our Senior Vice President of Store Sales and Operations, Regional Vice Presidents, Regional Sales Managers, and a Store Operations Team, who provide management development and guidance to individual store managers. Each Regional Sales Manager is responsible for hiring and developing store managers at the stores assigned to that Regional Sales Manager’s market, and for the overall operations and profitability of those stores. Each store is staffed with a store manager, assistant manager and key holders. The store manager is responsible for achieving certain sales and operational targets. Our stores have an incentive-based commission plan for managers and selling staff to encourage associates to focus on our customer’s wardrobing needs and sales productivity.

The COVID-19 pandemic continued to have an impact on our store operations during fiscal 2021. While the majority of our stores remained opened throughout fiscal 2021, we experienced some limited store closures throughout the year as a result of reduced store operating hours and staff shortages. Several of the safety protocols we implemented in fiscal 2020 are still in place. In addition, the majority of our stores continue to offer the option for no-contact, curbside pickup, through our BOPAC (buy online and pickup at curbside) and BOPIS (buy online pick-up in store) programs. For the safety of our field organization, our stores are equipped with iPads to enable our Regional Sales Managers and members of our senior leadership team the ability to engage with stores on a more frequent basis without the risk of travel.

MARKETING AND ADVERTISING

We believe that our marketing initiatives are key to driving our sales growth by increasing traffic to our stores, website and app. We are transforming our brand positioning by targeting our addressable market and focusing on our distinct advantages, which is a brand built around our proprietary fit, a specially-curated, extensive and often exclusive merchandise offering and an experience built around the respect, value and trust for our customers. Our focus is to acquire new customers and achieve a greater lifetime value across our entire customer file.

We have shifted our marketing strategy away from a broad-based shotgun advertising to a more targeted, personalized, data-driven model where we can segment and ultimately engage differently with each of our customers based on their shopping behaviors across all our buying channels. We adopted a stringent, analytical perspective to our marketing program, focusing on understanding incremental outcomes in addition to the “return on ad spend” throughout all of our programs. This data-driven philosophy extends across all of our marketing initiatives as we look at new ways to engage our customers. Our on-going work on enhancing our customer segmentation will ultimately drive our long-term marketing strategy, enabling us to create targeted and personalized content and messaging to our various customer segments.

Our marketing programs includes email, direct mail, loyalty program, direct marketing, digital marketing, social media, and streaming media, among others. Driving new-to-file growth and strengthening our brand positioning with our active file are key to our overall long-term growth and we expect to increase our marketing costs in fiscal 2022 to approximately 6% of sales to support these initiatives. For fiscal 2021, marketing costs were 4.7% of sales.

 

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GLOBAL SOURCING

Our global sourcing strategy is a balanced approach, which considers quality, cost and lead-time, depending on the requirements of the program. We believe our current sourcing structure meets our operating requirements and provide capacity for growth. The growth and effectiveness of our global direct sourcing program is a key component to the strength of merchandise margins.

We have built a strong internal team with extensive experience that is responsible for managing an international network of vendors and suppliers across the globe. We have established strong relationships with many of the leading factories and mills across the globe. Our sourcing network consists of over 28 factories in nine countries which are experts in big & tall sizing and production. In fiscal 2021, approximately 52% of all our product needs were sourced directly. We manufacture a significant percentage of our private-label merchandise in Southeast Asian countries consisting of Vietnam, Bangladesh, Cambodia and India. We continue to reduce dependency on China, inclusive of our raw materials and trims, and have moved certain programs into the Western Hemisphere with duty-free opportunities such as Nicaragua and Mexico.

In 2020, we retained Elevate Ltd., a global leader in supply chain assessment, and instituted 4-Pillar audits of our manufacturing facilities. Our intent is to increase our social, environmental and ethical sustainability by utilizing Elevates audit tool, "ERSA", which stands for ELEVATE Responsible Sourcing Assessment. ERSA 2.0 covers social compliance, human rights, environmental business ethics, and worker’s sentiment surveys. All audits can be found on their EIQ tool which is a web-based analytical system on which we participate in their Ethical Trade Audit platform. Through collaboration with Elevate Ltd., we are currently pursuing a “5-Pillar Audit”, which includes traceability of both raw materials and the equipment used to produce finished goods. We expect to roll out this program in 2022. Our intention is to increase our audit pillars to include all of our raw material suppliers that procure fabric, trims and inner components of our products.

In an effort to minimize foreign currency risk, all payments to our direct sourced vendors and buying agents are made in U.S. dollars with payment on account.

DISTRIBUTION

All of our retail distribution operations are centralized at our headquarters located in Canton, Massachusetts. We believe that having a centralized distribution facility maximizes the selling space and in-stock position of our stores and reduces the necessary levels of back-room stock. In addition, the distribution center provides order fulfillment services for our e-commerce business. In-bound calls for our e-commerce business are received at our Canton facility and are primarily fulfilled by our distribution center. If an order cannot be fulfilled by our distribution center, the order is completed at the store level. For our wholesale business, during fiscal 2021 we utilized three coastal third-party cross-dock facilities.

Our supply chain technology provides visibility for imports and domestic deliveries giving our buyers accurate shipping information and allowing the distribution center to plan staffing for arriving freight, resulting in reduced costs and improved receipt efficiency.

Our warehousing application and labor management system enable us to streamline our distribution processes, enhance our in-transit times, and reduce our distribution costs. We will continually work to make improvements and upgrades to our software.

Since 2003, we have utilized United Parcel Services (“UPS”) for all of our store shipments as well as our domestic customer deliveries. By utilizing UPS, we are able to track all deliveries from the warehouse to our individual stores, including the status of in-transit shipments. In addition, we are able to provide our direct customers with Authorized Return Service and Web labels, making returns more convenient for them. In October 2019, we renewed our contract with UPS through October 2022. We also entered into an agreement with the United States Postal Service to utilize their services when shipping from stores.

In order to service our International customers, we have contracted with a global e-commerce company for payment and shipment services. Through this service, international customers view and pay for products in their local currency. Our vendor then ships directly to our customer, which we believe helps avoid potential fraud and currency exchange rate risks.

MANAGEMENT INFORMATION SYSTEMS

The infrastructure of our management information systems is a priority to us. We believe that the investments we have made in this regard have improved our overall efficiency and improved our access to information enabling timely, data-driven decisions.

Our management information systems consist of a full range of retail merchandising and financial systems, which include merchandise planning and reporting, distribution center processing, inventory allocation, sales reporting, and financial processing and reporting. We believe that our current infrastructure provides us the ability and capacity to process transactions more efficiently and provides our management team with comprehensive tools with which to manage our business.

 

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Using a retail business intelligence solution, we are able to integrate data from several sources and provide enterprise-wide analytics reporting. Over the past few years, we have continued to develop a custom Assortment Suite application. In an effort to improve our inventory management, we have created a standardized set of “best practices” for both our merchandise planning and allocation groups.

Our direct and retail channels maintain a shared inventory system and we operate a single-system platform for our DXL and Casual Male XL stores to deliver improved efficiencies.

During fiscal 2021, we began the process of upgrading our Assortment Suite application to leverage business intelligence and predictive analytics to provide high-impact insights into core merchandising tasks. In addition, we continued to upgrade our security measures, including employing a Security Incident Event Management system.

During fiscal 2022, we will continue upgrading our Assortment Suite and plan to roll-out a new point-of-sale system.

COMPETITION

Our business faces competition from a variety of sources, including department stores, mass merchandisers, other specialty stores and discount and off-price retailers that sell big & tall men’s clothing. While we have successfully competed on the basis of merchandise selection, comfort and fit, customer service and desirable store locations, there can be no assurances that other retailers, including e-commerce retailers, will not adopt purchasing and marketing concepts similar to ours. Discount retailers with significant buying power, such as Wal-Mart and J.C. Penney, represent a source of competition for us. The direct business has many competitors, including the King Size catalog and website as well as online marketplaces, such as Amazon.

The United States big & tall men’s clothing market is highly competitive with many national and regional department stores, specialty apparel retailers, single market operators and discount stores offering a broad range of apparel products similar to ours, the similarity being that the clothes they sell are intended for big and tall men. Besides retail competitors, we consider any casual apparel manufacturer operating in outlet malls throughout the United States to be a competitor in the casual apparel market. We believe that we are the only national operator of men’s apparel stores focused exclusively on the men’s big & tall market.

SEASONALITY

Historically, and consistent with the retail industry, we have experienced seasonal fluctuations as it relates to our operating income, net income, and free cash flow. Traditionally, a significant portion of our operating income, net income, and free cash flow is generated in the fourth quarter, because of the holiday season. Our inventory is typically at peak levels by the end of the third quarter, which represents a significant use of cash, which is then relieved in the fourth quarter as we sell-down our inventory through the holiday shopping season.

TRADEMARKS/TRADEMARK LICENSE AGREEMENTS

We own several service marks and trademarks relating to our businesses, including, among others, “Destination XL®”, “DXL®”, “DXL Mens Apparel®”, “Big on Being Better®”, “Casual Male®”, “Casual Male XL®”, “Harbor Bay®”, “Oak Hill®”, “Continuous Comfort®”, “Synrgy™”, “Society of One®” and “True Nation®”. We also hold a U.S. patent for an extendable collar system, which is marketed as “Neck-Relaxer®” and a U.S. copyright for a no-iron hang tag.

ENVIRONMENTAL, SOCIAL AND GOVERNANCE

At DXL, corporate social responsibility and sustainability has been a focus for many years and we recognize the importance of environmental, social and governance ("ESG") issues. We are diligently working to enhance and develop a platform that we can share with our stakeholders. During fiscal 2021, we formed the Corporate Social Responsibility Committee, comprising a cross-discipline of corporate management and engaged with a third-party firm to assist us in the development of the Company's ESG policies and initiatives.

HUMAN CAPITAL MANAGEMENT

As of January 29, 2022, we had 1,353 employees. We hire additional temporary employees during the peak Fall and Holiday seasons. None of our employees is represented by any collective bargaining agreement. Our associates are our greatest asset and we are committed to providing them a safe and healthy work environment. Each associate is required to sign a set of policies that include, among other policies, the code of ethics, anti-harassment and procedures for raising a complaint. Our policies also contain protection of human rights and prohibit, among other things, the use of child labor or forced, bonded or indentured labor.

Inclusion and Diversity

 

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We are committed to inclusivity, acceptance, and equality. Since 2017, we have had a diversity and inclusion initiative called “Normalizing the Brand.” The program brings awareness to unconscious bias and focuses on ensuring that the composition of our organization looks and feels like the communities where we live and serve. We have policies and training in place with respect to anti-discrimination and anti-harassment, among others, and provide our associates with access to an anonymous hot-line for reporting any concerns. Throughout the year, we require our associates to participate in educational videos. In early 2022, we will be launching a survey to all associates, specifically focused on Inclusion and Diversity. In early 2021, we joined with CEO Action for Diversity & Inclusion, a coalition of nearly 2,000 CEOs, pledging to advance diversity and inclusion in the workplace. By signing on to this commitment, we have pledged to take action to cultivate a workplace where diverse perspectives and experiences are welcomed and respected, and where employees feel encouraged to discuss diversity and inclusion without retribution.

Workplace, Culture and Career Development

We are committed to providing our associates an environment where they have an opportunity to provide input on issues affecting the Company’s workforce and the employer-associate relationship. Periodically through the year, we encourage feedback and ideas from our associates through our annual engagement surveys and periodic pulse surveys. Perhaps most importantly, we promote professional and career development and mentorship programs. In 2014, our Associate Engagement & Development Committee implemented the DXLG Mentor Program, which pairs up to 20 mentees with mentors for one-year periods. In April 2016, the DXL Women’s Leadership Group was formed with a mission of “Women supporting, educating and empowering each other @ DXLG”. It started as a pilot program and quickly expanded to now include over 40 female leaders, both people and process managers, in the corporate office and field. In addition, for the past four years, we have presented Leadercast, a platform for leadership development content (held annually in May) and Leadercast Women (held annually in October) as a host site at our corporate headquarters. For the past two years, the programs were made available via an online platform. Our Associate Engagement & Development Committee organizes “Lunch, Learn, Lead” and “Coffee Talk” sessions throughout the year to provide our associates an opportunity to gain insight on a variety of topics, such as, DXL’s social responsibility initiatives, TED talks, Global Sourcing, Normalizing the Brand and Technology. We also have partnered with Marist College to provide our DXL associates and their immediate adult family members a 25% discount toward on-line tuition costs.

Compensation and Benefits

Our compensation programs are designed to pay our associates competitively in the market, based on their skills, qualifications, role, and abilities. Our benefits are designed to help employees and their families stay healthy and help them balance their work and personal lives. These benefits include health and wellness, paid time off, employee assistance, competitive pay, career growth opportunities, paid volunteer time, product discounts, and a culture of recognition. The challenges created by the global pandemic brought mental health awareness to the forefront. We began a program with CALM, an app that provides our home office associates an opportunity to incorporate meditation and other mindfulness activities into their daily routines as well as BurnAlong, a free online health, wellness and fitness platform available to all associates. We also provide an Employee Assistance Program (EAP) which provides 24/7 assistance to associates and their family members for a variety of issues such as stress, family, parenting, finances.

AVAILABLE INFORMATION

Our corporate website is www.dxl.com. Our investor relations site is http://investor.dxl.com. We make available through our website, free of charge, our Annual Reports on Form 10-K, Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q, Current Reports on Form 8-K and all amendments to such reports filed or furnished pursuant to Section 13(a) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended, as soon as reasonably practicable after we have electronically filed such material with, or furnished such materials to, the Securities and Exchange Commission. The SEC maintains an internet site that contains reports, proxy and information statements, and other information for issuers that file electronically with the SEC at http://www.sec.gov.

 

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Item 1A. Risk Factors

The following risk factors are the important factors of which we are aware that could cause actual results, performance or achievements to differ materially from those expressed in any of our forward-looking statements. We operate in a continually changing business environment and new risk factors emerge from time to time. Other unknown or unpredictable factors also could have material adverse effects on our future results, performance or achievements. We cannot assure you that our projected results or events will be achieved or will occur.

Risks Related to Our Company and Our Industry

We may not be successful in executing our strategy and growing our market share.

For us to be successful in the future and maintain growth, we must be able to continue increasing our share of the big & tall men’s apparel market. Our growth is dependent on our ability to continue to build upon our DXL brand, maintain our existing customers and continue to attract new customers. Our failure to execute our strategy successfully could prevent us from growing our market share, which could have a material adverse effect on our results of operations, cash flows and financial position, including if we were unable to:

grow our DXL e-commerce business;
develop an effective modern marketing program to build store and digital awareness as well as increase store and online traffic, attract customers across all channels, and grow sales;
predict and respond to fashion trends, while offering our customers a broad selection of merchandise in an extended selection of sizes;
grow our existing customer base;
attract and retain new customers across all channels;
hire qualified store management and store associates;
continue to grow and then sustain the number of transactions, units-per-transaction and share of wallet; and
operate at appropriate operating margins.

Our marketing programs and efforts to drive traffic and convert that traffic into an increased loyal customer base are critical to achieving market share growth within the big & tall men’s apparel market and may not be successful.

Our ability to increase our share of the big & tall men’s apparel market is largely dependent on effectively marketing our merchandise to all of our target customers in several diverse market segments so that they will become loyal shoppers who spend a greater portion of their wallets on our product offerings. In order to grow our market share, we depend on the success of our marketing and advertising in a variety of ways, including streaming media advertising, advertising events, loyalty programs, direct mail, and digital marketing, including social media and customer prospecting. Our business is directly impacted by the success of these efforts and those of our vendors. Future marketing efforts by us, our vendors or our other licensors, may be more costly than prior years and, if not successful, may negatively affect our ability to meet our sales goals and gain market share.

Our direct business is a significant component of our growth strategy, and the failure to develop our e-commerce and internet infrastructure could disrupt our business and negatively impact our sales.

We continue to have increasing levels of sales made through online shopping and via mobile devices. We have made significant investments in capital spending and labor to develop these channels and increased investments in digital marketing to attract new customers. The growth of our overall sales is dependent on customers’ continuing to expand their online purchases in addition to in-store purchases. Over the past two fiscal years, we have seen significant growth in our direct business, with revenue for fiscal 2021 increasing 45.3% from fiscal 2019. While it is our objective to continue to grow this business, there can be no assurance that this growth will continue or be sustainable.

Our success in growing our direct business will depend in part upon our development of an increasingly sophisticated e-commerce experience and infrastructure. Increasing sophistication requires that we provide additional website features, functionality and messaging in order to be competitive in the marketplace and maintain market share. We continually update our website features, but we cannot predict future trends and required functionality or our adoption rate for customer preferences. In addition, we are vulnerable to additional risks and uncertainties associated with e-commerce sales, including security breaches, cyber-attacks, consumer privacy concerns, changes in state tax regimes and government regulation of internet activities. Our failure to respond to

 

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these risks and uncertainties successfully could reduce our direct sales, increase our costs and diminish our growth prospects, which could negatively affect our operating results.

If we are unable to develop and implement our omni-channel initiatives successfully, our market share and financial results could be adversely affected.

Our customer’s shopping behavior continues to evolve across multiple channels and we are working to meet his needs, with the real time store inventory visibility, our mobile app, the expansion of our BOPIS (buy online pick up in stores) and BOPAC (buy online pick up curbside) to help our customers continue to shop during the pandemic. We consider ourselves a customer centric omni-channel retailer, and we continue to make ongoing investments in our information technology systems to support evolving omni-channel capabilities.

Omni-channel retailing is rapidly evolving and our success depends on our ability to anticipate and implement innovations in sales and marketing technology and logistics in order to appeal to existing and potential customers who increasingly rely on multiple channels to meet their shopping needs. In addition, our competitors are also investing in omni-channel initiatives, some of which may be more successful than our initiatives.

If the investment in our omni-channel initiatives is not successful, our systems are unable to support such initiatives, or if our competitors are more successful, our financial results and our market penetration may be adversely affected.

The loss of, or disruption in, our centralized distribution center could negatively impact our business and operations.

The majority of our merchandise for our stores and e-commerce operations is received into our centralized distribution center in Canton, Massachusetts, where it is then processed, sorted and shipped to our stores or directly to our customers. We depend in large part on the orderly operation of this receiving and distribution process, which depends, in turn, on adherence to shipping schedules and effective management of the distribution center. Although we believe that our receiving and distribution process is efficient and well-positioned to support our strategic plans, events beyond our control, such as disruptions in operations due to fire or other catastrophic events, employee matters or shipping problems, or disruptions in our distribution center, including potential restrictions due to the pandemic, could result in delays in the delivery of merchandise to our stores or directly to our customers. The COVID-19 pandemic has also resulted in labor shortages, which may affect our ability to process and ship inventory in a timely manner.

With all of our management information systems centralized in our corporate headquarters, any disruption or destruction of our system infrastructure could materially affect our business. This type of disaster is mitigated by our offsite storage and disaster recovery plans, but we would still incur business interruption that may impact our business a significant period of time.

Although we maintain business interruption and property insurance, we cannot be sure that our insurance will be sufficient, or that insurance proceeds will be timely paid to us, in the event our distribution center is shut down for any reason or if we incur higher costs and longer lead times in connection with a disruption relating to our distribution center.

The global impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and its variants have had and, based on the current status and uncertainty, may continue to have an adverse effect on our business, financial results, liquidity, supply chain and workforce.

Since 2020, the COVID-19 pandemic and its variants have caused global uncertainty and disruption and has had a material impact on our business, predominately in fiscal 2020 and early 2021. While we saw significant recovery in our business during fiscal 2021, continued risk and uncertainty remain particularly related to the potential for new variants, current and future actions that may be taken by federal, state and local agencies to mitigate any resurgences, the disruption and recovery of the global supply chain, the long-term economic impact, inflationary pressures, and the continuing labor shortages.

Further, we also recognize that our business benefited from a certain level of pent-up demand and fiscal stimulus policy during fiscal 2021, which may have a negative impact our financial results in fiscal 2022 if we are not able to successfully manage the potential shifts in consumer spending.

Even after the COVID-19 pandemic subsides, our business may be negatively impacted, specifically as it relates to the changes in consumer spending behaviors, the labor market, the global supply chain and inflation, resulting from the pandemic.

Our business may be adversely affected due to disruptions in the global supply chain.

Disruptions in the global supply chain in foreign ports and shortages of vessels and shipping containers may impact our ability to import inventory in a timely manner. The impact of COVID-19 and labor shortages on domestic ports has also created a similar disruption in the supply chain and may continue to cause delays in the receipt and shipment of inventory. In addition, the recent

 

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invasion by Russia of Ukraine may cause additional tariffs, sanctions, import/export restrictions and future actions that may have a negative impact on the supply chain and may limit the availability of certain raw materials and associated cost. Furthermore, in the event that commercial transportation is curtailed or substantially delayed, we may not be able to maintain adequate inventory levels of important merchandise on a consistent basis, which would negatively impact our sales and potentially erode the confidence of our customer base, leading to loss of sales and an adverse impact on our results of operations. Further, we may also incur incremental freight costs which could negatively harm our gross margin rates.

Our business may be adversely affected if we are unable to manage our store portfolio successfully.

 

We lease all of our store locations. Renewing and renegotiating these leases at acceptable lease terms is critical to the profitability of our stores. Since the start of the pandemic in March 2020, we have worked closely with our landlords to renegotiate and restructure the majority of our lease portfolio. While sales from the majority of our stores returned to pre-pandemic levels in fiscal 2021, given the ongoing variants, supply chain issues and labor shortages, certain stores may not be profitable and we may not be able to renew existing agreements. We will continue to evaluate our store portfolio to optimize store profitability and omni-channel distribution. As part of that evaluation, we may choose not to renew certain lease locations. We are actively reviewing opportunities to relocate or convert Casual Male XL stores to DXL and we are reviewing white space opportunities in markets where our store footprint is underpenetrated. We expect to continue to invest in stores over the next several years as we further strengthen the store portfolio, but if we are unable to find locations or obtain favorable lease terms, we may not be able to grow or maintain our current store base.

We are dependent on third parties for the manufacture of the merchandise we sell.

We do not own or operate any manufacturing facilities and are therefore entirely dependent on third parties to manufacture the merchandise we sell. Without adequate supplies of merchandise to sell to our customers in the merchandise styles and fashions demanded by our particular customer base, sales would decrease materially and our business would suffer. We are dependent on these third parties’ ability to fulfill our merchandise orders and meet our delivery terms. In the event that manufacturers are unable or unwilling to ship products to us in a timely manner or continue to manufacture products for us, we would have to rely on other current manufacturing sources or identify and qualify new manufacturers. We might not be able to identify or qualify such manufacturers for existing or new products in a timely manner and such manufacturers might not allocate sufficient capacity to us in order to meet our requirements. Our inability to secure adequate and timely supplies of private-label merchandise would negatively impact proper inventory levels, sales and gross margin rates, and ultimately our results of operations.

In addition, even if our current manufacturers continue to manufacture our products, they may not maintain adequate controls with respect to product specifications and quality and may not continue to produce products that are consistent with our standards. If we were forced to rely on manufacturers who produce products of inferior quality, then our brand and customer satisfaction would likely suffer which would negatively impact our business. These manufacturers may also increase the cost to us of the products we purchase from them. The Company publishes a Code of Conduct, which is a part of every agreement requiring compliance by the manufacturing facilities.

The United States Treasury Department has placed sanctions on China’s Xinjiang Production and Construction Corporation ("XPCC") for serious human rights abuses against ethnic minorities in China’s Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region ("XUAR"). In addition, in January 2021, the US Customs Border Protection (“CBP”) issued a Withhold Release Order on Products Made in Xinjiang region of China released. In response to the problems in Xinjiang, we developed a Compliance Certificate of Traceability for our cotton vendors. Although we prohibit our vendors from doing business with XPCC, we could be subject to penalties, fines or sanctions and our brand could be harmed if any of the vendors from which we purchase product is found to have done business, directly or indirectly, with XPCC.

We work with a third-party audit vendor to ensure a responsible and ethical supply chain. We are and will continue to pursue our corporate responsibilities and create a positive effect on human rights as well as the environment. If, despite third-party audits, the manufacturing facilities engage in workplace or human rights violations and we are unable to identify or correct it, it may negatively affect our business and harm our brand.

Our business may be negatively impacted and we may be liable if third parties misappropriate proprietary information of our customers and breach our security systems.

We may be harmed by security risks we face in connection with our electronic processing and transmission of confidential customer information. The majority of our retail sales are settled through credit and debit card transactions. While our Board of Directors has a Cybersecurity and Data Privacy Committee to oversee the monitoring and management of cyber risk and data privacy for our Company, and we have not had any security breaches to date, any breach could expose us to risks of loss, litigation, and liability and could adversely affect our operations as well as cause our shoppers to stop shopping with us as a result of their lack of confidence in the security of their personally identifiable information, which could have a negative impact on our sales and profitability. We attempt

 

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to limit exposures to security breaches and sensitive customer data through the use of “tokens” in connection with both in-store and online credit card transactions, which eliminates the storage of credit card numbers. Like many retailers, we have seen an increase in cyberattack attempts, predominantly through phishing and social engineering scams, and in particular, ransomware. While none of these attempts has been successful, there can be no assurance that our continued security measures will be effective or sufficient in the future. If third parties are able to penetrate our network security or otherwise misappropriate the personal information or credit card information of our customers or if third parties gain unauthorized and improper access to such information, we could be subject to liability. These liabilities could include claims for unauthorized purchases with credit card information, impersonation or other similar fraud claims, or claims for other misuses of personal information, including unauthorized marketing purposes, and could ultimately result in litigation. Liability for misappropriation of this information could be significant.

Further, if a third party were to use this proprietary customer information in order to compete with us, it could have a material adverse impact on our business and could result in litigation.

Our business is highly competitive, and competitive factors may reduce our revenues and profit margins.

The United States big & tall men’s apparel market is highly competitive with many national and regional department stores, mass merchandisers, specialty apparel retailers, discount stores and online retailers offering a broad range of apparel products similar to the products that we sell. Besides retail competitors, we consider any manufacturer of big & tall men’s merchandise operating in outlet malls throughout the United States to be a competitor. It is also possible that another competitor, either a mass merchant or a men’s specialty store or specialty apparel catalog, could gain market share in big & tall men’s apparel due to more favorable pricing, locations, brand and fashion assortment and size availability. Many of our competitors and potential competitors may have substantially greater financial, manufacturing and marketing resources than we do.

The presence in the marketplace of various fashion trends and the limited availability of shelf space also can affect competition. We may not be able to compete successfully with our competitors in the future and could lose market share. A significant loss of market share would adversely affect our revenues and results of operations.

In addition, we maintain exclusivity arrangements with several of the brands that we carry. If we were to lose any of these exclusivity arrangements or brands altogether, our revenues may be adversely affected.

Our ability to operate and expand our business and to respond to changing business and economic conditions will depend on the availability of adequate capital.

The operation of our business, the rate of our expansion and our ability to respond to changing business and economic conditions, depend on the availability of adequate capital, which in turn depends on cash flow generated by our business and, if necessary, the availability of equity or debt capital. We will also need sufficient cash flow to meet our future obligations under our existing credit facility.

The amount that we are able to borrow and have outstanding under our credit facility at any given time is determined using an availability formula based on eligible assets. As a result, our ability to borrow is subject to certain risks and uncertainties, such as advance rates and the amount and quality of inventory, which could reduce the funds available to us under our credit facility. In addition, because of the disruptions in the supply chain, inventory levels may be lower than expected. This directly impacts our borrowing base and there can be no assurance that we can effectively manage the balance of maintaining inventory and sufficient availability, especially during peak selling periods.

We cannot makes assurances that our cash flow from operations or cash available under our credit facility will be sufficient to meet our needs. If we are unable to generate sufficient cash flows from operations in the future, we may have to obtain additional financing. If we incur additional indebtedness, that indebtedness may contain significant financial and other covenants that may significantly restrict our operations and we cannot ensure we would be able to obtain refinancing or that such additional financing would be on favorable terms.

Our business is seasonal and is affected by general economic conditions.

Our business is seasonal. Historically, a significant portion of our operating income has been generated during our fourth quarter (November-January). If, for any reason, we miscalculate the demand for our products during our fourth quarter, our sales in that quarter could decline, resulting in higher labor costs as a percentage of sales, lower margins and excess inventory, which could cause our annual operating results to suffer. In addition, our operations may be negatively affected by local, regional or national economic conditions, such as levels of disposable consumer income, inflation, consumer debt, interest rates, consumer confidence and other

 

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macro issues. Due to our seasonality, the possible adverse impact from such risks is potentially greater if any such risks occurs during our fourth quarter.

 

We may be unable to achieve our environmental, social and governance goals.

We are committed to corporate social responsibility and sustainability and we recognize the importance of environmental, social and governance ("ESG") issues. During fiscal 2021, we formed the Corporate Social Responsibility Committee, comprising a cross-discipline of corporate management and engaged with a third-party firm to assist us in the development of the Company's ESG policies and initiatives.

Achievement of our initiatives is subject to risks and uncertainties and we may fail to achieve our objectives. We may also incur additional costs and require additional resources to monitor, report, and comply with such ESG practices and regulations. We may also face pressure from our stockholders, customers and employees to make accelerated and material advancements in these ESG matters.

In addition, an increasing number of our stakeholders are considering sustainability factors when making related decisions regarding employment, brand loyalty and investment. Failure to establish effective policies, procedures and metrics may negatively affect our reputation, and it may be more difficult for us to compete effectively, all of which would have an adverse effect on our business, operating results, and financial condition.

We may be unable to predict fashion trends and customer preferences successfully.

Customer tastes and fashion trends are volatile and tend to change rapidly. Our success depends in large part upon our ability to predict effectively and respond to changing fashion tastes and consumer demands and to translate market trends to appropriate saleable product offerings. If we are unable to predict or respond to changing styles or trends successfully and misjudge the market for products or any new product lines, our sales will be impacted and we may be faced with a substantial amount of unsold inventory or missed opportunities. In response, we may be forced to rely on additional markdowns or promotional sales to dispose of excess, slow-moving inventory, which would decrease our revenues and margins. In addition, the failure to satisfy consumer demand, specifically in our DXL stores and from our website, could have serious longer-term consequences, such as an adverse impact on our brand value and the loss of market share to our competitors.

The loss of any of our key trademarks or licenses could adversely affect demand for our products.

We own and use a number of trademarks and operate under several trademark license agreements. We believe that certain of these trademarks have significant value and are instrumental in our ability to create and sustain demand for and to market our products. We cannot be certain that these trademarks and licensing agreements will remain in effect and enforceable or that any license agreements, upon expiration, can be renewed on acceptable terms or at all. In addition, any future disputes concerning these trademarks and licenses may cause us to incur significant litigation costs or force us to suspend use of the disputed trademarks.

General Risks That May Affect Our Business

If our long-lived assets become impaired, we may need to record significant non-cash impairment charges.

Periodically, we review our long-lived assets for impairment whenever economic events or changes in circumstances indicate that the carrying value of an asset may not be recoverable. Specifically, if an individual store location is unable to generate sufficient future cash flows, we may be required to record a partial or full impairment of that store’s right-of-use assets and its property and equipment. In addition, significant negative industry or general economic trends, disruptions to our business and unexpected significant changes or planned changes in our use of the assets (such as store relocations or closures) may also result in impairment charges. Due to the uncertainty that remains regarding the duration of the pandemic and its impact on our store locations, we may need to take additional impairment charges. Any such impairment charges, if significant, could adversely affect our financial position and results of operations.

Changes to LIBOR may negatively impact us.

The London interbank offered rate (“LIBOR”) is the basic rate of interest used in lending between banks on the London interbank market and is widely used as a reference for setting the interest rate on loans globally. Our current credit facility provides us an option to convert some of our prime-based borrowings into short-term LIBOR contracts.

 

Regulators in the United Kingdom that oversee LIBOR have stated that they cannot guarantee LIBOR's availability beyond the end of 2021 and expects that reliance on LIBOR will be phased out through June 2023. In the absence of a LIBOR rate, our credit facility

 

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with Citizens Bank, N.A. provides for a successor rate, based on the Secured Overnight Financing Rate. As such, while we do not expect that we will have to renegotiate our credit facility, we do not know whether it could result in increased interest costs. In the absence of a favorable LIBOR or successor rate, our borrowings bear interest based on the Federal Funds rate. At January 29, 2022, there were no outstanding borrowings under our credit facility, however, we cannot provide assurance that future interest rate charges will not have a material negative impact on our business, financial position, or operating results.

Our success depends significantly on our key personnel and our ability to attract and retain additional personnel.

Our future success is dependent on the personal efforts, performance and abilities of our key management, which includes our executive officers as well as members of our senior management. The loss of any of our senior management may result in a loss of organizational focus, poor operating execution, an inability to identify and execute strategic initiatives, an impairment in our ability to identify new store locations, and an inability to consummate possible acquisitions. The competition is intense for the type of highly skilled individuals with relevant industry experience that we require and we may not be able to continue to attract and retain new employees of the caliber needed to achieve our objectives.

Labor shortages or increases in labor costs due to new regulations could harm our business.

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, during fiscal 2021 we continued to experience labor shortages primarily in our distribution facility and in our stores. If such labor shortages continue, especially during peak-selling periods, it may negatively impact our ability to process inventory in a timely manner and effectively staff our stores. Because of the tight labor market, during fiscal 2021, we increased our starting hourly rate to attract candidates. If we are unable to pass on these higher costs through price increases or reduced workforce hours, our margins and profitability may be adversely impacted which could have a material adverse effect on our business, results of operations or financial condition.

We expect that the costs associated with ocean, rail and road transportation will continue to be higher than pre-pandemic levels and may increase further in fiscal 2022 as a result of continuing supply chain challenges and a tight labor market.

Fluctuations in the price, availability and quality of raw materials and finished goods could increase costs.

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic and the ban of Xinjiang cotton, we are seeing cost increases in labor and across raw materials. We have secured raw materials in key item programs to reduce the impact on our gross margin. Fluctuations in the price, availability and quality of fabrics or other raw materials used in the manufacturing of our merchandise could have a material adverse effect on our gross margin or on our ability to meet our customers’ demands. The prices for fabrics depend on demand and market prices for the raw materials used to produce them. To the extent that we cannot offset these cost increases with other cost reductions or efficiencies, such higher costs will need to be passed on to our customers. Such increased costs could lead to reduced customer demand, which could have a material adverse effect on our results of operations and cash flow.

Failure to comply with laws, rules and regulations could negatively affect our business operations and financial performance.

Our business is subject to federal, state, and increasing local rules and regulations, such as state and local wage and hour laws, the U.S. Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (“ERISA”), securities laws, import and export laws (including customs regulations), privacy and information security regulations, unclaimed property laws, and many others. The effect of some of these laws and regulations may be to increase the cost of doing business and may have a material impact on our earnings. In addition, the complexity of the regulatory environment in which we operate and the related cost of compliance are both increasing due to legal and regulatory requirements and increased enforcement. We may also be subject to investigations or audits by governmental authorities and regulatory agencies, which can occur in the ordinary course of business or which can result from increased scrutiny from a particular agency towards an industry, country or practice. If we fail to comply with laws, rules and regulations or the manner in which they are interpreted or applied, we may be subject to government enforcement action, class action litigation or other litigation, damage to our reputation, civil and criminal liability, damages, fines and penalties, and increased cost of regulatory compliance, any of which could adversely affect our results of operations and financial performance.

Risks Related to Our Corporate Structure and Stock

Our stock price has been and will likely continue to be volatile and fluctuate substantially.

The market price of our common stock has been and will likely continue to fluctuate substantially as a result of many factors, some of which are beyond our control. For example, from September 8, 2021, when we relisted on the Nasdaq Global market through January

 

18


 

29, 2022, the reported price of our common stock has ranged from a low of $4.20 on January 28, 2022, to a high of $8.99 on November 17, 2021. Factors that could cause fluctuations in the market price of our common stock include the following:

the ongoing effect of the COVID pandemic and its variants on the retail industry and overall economy;
overall changes in the economy and general market volatility, including the effects of inflation;
news announcements regarding our quarterly or annual results of operations;
quarterly comparable sales;
acquisitions;
competitive developments;
governmental regulation (such as increased wage and paid benefits laws);
litigation affecting us; or
market views as to the prospects of the retail clothing industry generally.

Our certificate of incorporation, as amended, limits transfers of our common stock and may, along with state law, inhibit potential acquisition bids that could be beneficial to our stockholders.

Our certificate of incorporation, as amended, contains provisions that restrict any person or entity from attempting to purchase our stock, without prior permission from the Board of Directors, to the extent that such transfer would (i) create or result in an individual or entity becoming a five-percent stockholder of our stock, or (ii) increase the stock ownership percentage of any existing five-percent stockholder. These provisions provide that any transfer that violates such provisions shall be null and void and would require the purported transferee, upon demand by us, to transfer the shares that exceed the five percent limit to an agent designated by us for the purpose of conducting a sale of such excess shares. These provisions would make the acquisition of our Company more expensive to the acquirer and could significantly delay, discourage, or prevent third parties from acquiring our Company without the approval of our Board of Directors.

In addition, we are subject to certain provisions of Delaware law, which could also delay or make more difficult a merger, tender offer or proxy contest involving us. In particular, Section 203 of the Delaware General Corporation Law prohibits a Delaware corporation from engaging in certain business combinations with any interested stockholder for a period of three years unless specific conditions are met. In addition, certain provisions of Delaware law could have the effect of delaying, deferring or preventing a change in control of us, including, without limitation, discouraging a proxy contest or making more difficult the acquisition of a substantial block of our common stock. The provisions could also limit the price that investors might be willing to pay in the future for shares of our common stock.

 

Item 1B. Unresolved Staff Comments

None.

 

 

19


 

Item 2. Properties

Our corporate offices and retail distribution center are located at 555 Turnpike Street in Canton, Massachusetts. The property consists of a 755,992 gross square foot building located on approximately 27.3 acres. We owned the property until January 30, 2006, at which time we entered into a sale-leaseback transaction, whereby we entered into a twenty-year lease agreement for an initial annual rent payment of $4.6 million, with periodic increases every fifth anniversary of the lease.

As of January 29, 2022, we operated 220 Destination XL retail stores, 16 Destination XL outlet stores, 35 Casual Male XL retail stores and 19 Casual Male XL outlet stores. We lease all of these stores directly from owners of several different types of centers, including life-style centers, shopping centers, freestanding buildings, outlet centers and downtown locations. The store leases are generally 5 to 10 years in length and contain renewal options extending their terms by between 5 and 10 years. Following this discussion is a listing by state of all store locations open at January 29, 2022.

Sites for new stores are selected based on several factors, including the demographic profile of the area in which the site is located, the types of stores and other retailers in the area, the location of the store within the center and the attractiveness of the store layout. We also utilize financial models to project the profitability of each location using assumptions such as the center’s sales per square foot averages, estimated occupancy costs and return on investment requirements.

 

 

20


 

 

Store count by state at January 29, 2022

 

United States

 

DXL retail and
outlet stores

 

 

Casual Male XL
retail and outlet stores

 

Alabama

 

2

 

 

1

 

Arizona

 

6

 

 

 

 

Arkansas

 

 

 

 

1

 

California

 

25

 

 

4

 

Colorado

 

3

 

 

 

 

Connecticut

 

3

 

 

 

 

Delaware

 

2

 

 

 

 

Florida

 

10

 

 

6

 

Georgia

 

4

 

 

2

 

Idaho

 

1

 

 

 

 

Illinois

 

11

 

 

2

 

Indiana

 

6

 

 

3

 

Iowa

 

2

 

 

1

 

Kansas

 

2

 

 

 

 

Kentucky

 

3

 

 

 

 

Louisiana

 

3

 

 

1

 

Maine

 

2

 

 

 

 

Maryland

 

6

 

 

2

 

Massachusetts

 

5

 

 

2

 

Michigan

 

13

 

 

1

 

Minnesota

 

2

 

 

1

 

Mississippi

 

 

 

 

2

 

Missouri

 

5

 

 

2

 

Montana

 

1

 

 

 

 

Nebraska

 

2

 

 

 

 

Nevada

 

3

 

 

 

 

New Hampshire

 

3

 

 

 

 

New Jersey

 

8

 

 

5

 

New Mexico

 

1

 

 

 

 

New York

 

17

 

 

1

 

North Carolina

 

4

 

 

2

 

North Dakota

 

 

 

 

1

 

Ohio

 

10

 

 

1

 

Oklahoma

 

2

 

 

 

 

Oregon

 

2

 

 

1

 

Pennsylvania

 

11

 

 

6

 

Rhode Island

 

1

 

 

 

 

South Carolina

 

4

 

 

 

 

South Dakota

 

1

 

 

 

 

Tennessee

 

7

 

 

 

 

Texas

 

24

 

 

3

 

Utah

 

1

 

 

 

 

Vermont

 

1

 

 

 

 

Virginia

 

6

 

 

2

 

Washington

 

5

 

 

 

 

West Virginia

 

 

 

 

1

 

Wisconsin

 

5

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

International

 

 

 

 

 

 

Toronto, Canada

 

1

 

 

 

 

 

From time to time, we are subject to various legal proceedings and claims that arise in the ordinary course of business. Management believes that the resolution of these matters will not have a material adverse impact on our future results of operations or financial position.

Item 4. Mine Safety Disclosure

Not applicable.

 

21


 

 

PART II.

Item 5. Market for Registrant’s Common Equity, Related Stockholder Matters and Issuer Purchases of Equity Securities

Market Information

Our common stock is listed for trading on the Nasdaq Global Market under the symbol “DXLG”.

Holders

As of March 15, 2022, based upon data provided by the transfer agent for our common stock, there were approximately 78 holders of record of our common stock. The number of holders does not include individuals or entities who beneficially own shares but whose shares are held of record by a broker or clearing agent.

Issuer Purchases of Equity Securities

There were no stock repurchases during fiscal 2021.

 

 

 

22


 

Stock Performance Graph

 

The following Performance Graph compares our cumulative stockholder return with a broad market index (Standard & Poor’s 500) and one published industry index (Dow Jones U.S. Apparel Retailers) for each of the most recent five years ended January 31. The cumulative stockholder return for shares of our common stock (“DXLG”) and each of the indices is calculated assuming that $100 was invested on January 31, 2017. We paid no cash dividends during the periods shown. The performance of the indices is shown on a total return (dividends reinvested) basis. The graph lines merely connect January 31 of each year and do not reflect fluctuations between those dates. In addition, we have included a chart of the annual percentage return of our common stock, the S&P 500 and the Dow Jones U.S. Apparel Retailers.

 

 

img231920900_0.jpg 

 

 

Annual Return Percentage

 

 

Year ended

 

Company/Index

 

 

 

Jan 18

 

 

Jan 19

 

 

Jan 20

 

 

Jan 21

 

 

Jan 22

 

DXLG

 

 

(21.8

%)

 

 

(2.3

%)

 

 

(56.0

%)

 

 

(27.9

%)

 

 

441.3

%

S&P 500

 

 

20.4

%

 

 

(2.0

%)

 

 

19.2

%

 

 

15.2

%

 

 

19.3

%

Dow Jones U.S. Apparel Retailers

 

 

9.4

%

 

 

8.4

%

 

 

10.8

%

 

 

6.2

%

 

 

8.1

%

 

Indexed Returns

 

 

Base Period

 

 

 

 

 

 

Jan 17

 

 

Jan 18

 

 

Jan 19

 

 

Jan 20

 

 

Jan 21

 

 

Jan 22

 

Company/Index

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

DXLG

 

$

100

 

 

$

78.18

 

 

$

76.36

 

 

$

33.64

 

 

$

24.24

 

 

$

131.21

 

S&P 500

 

$

100

 

 

$

120.37

 

 

$

117.95

 

 

$

140.56

 

 

$

161.86

 

 

$

193.13

 

Dow Jones U.S. Apparel Retailers

 

$

100

 

 

$

109.41

 

 

$

118.60

 

 

$

131.47

 

 

$

139.65

 

 

$

150.90

 

The performance graph above shall not be deemed “filed” for purposes of Section 18 of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended (the “Exchange Act”), or otherwise subject to the liability of that section. This graph will not be deemed incorporated by reference into any filing under the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, or the Exchange Act, whether made before or after the date hereof, regardless of any general incorporation language in such filing.

 

Item 6.

Reserved.

 

23


 

Item 7. Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations

FORWARD LOOKING STATEMENTS

As noted above in Part 1, this Annual Report, including, without limitation, this Item 7, contains “forward-looking statements,” including forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Actual results or developments could differ materially from those projected in such statements because of numerous factors, including, without limitation those risks and uncertainties set forth in Item 1A, Risk Factors, which you are encouraged to read. These forward-looking statements generally relate to plans and objectives for future operations and are based upon management’s reasonable estimates of future results or trends. Such statements include the potential impact on results in fiscal 2022 as it relates to the ongoing global supply chain disruptions, the geopolitical instability from Russia's invasion of Ukraine, the increase in freight costs, the increase in certain raw materials and labor shortages as well as overall changes in consumer spending and demand due to the continued risk of new variants and inflation. The following discussion and analysis of our financial condition and results of operations should be read in light of those risks and uncertainties and in conjunction with our accompanying Consolidated Financial Statements and Notes thereto.

All subsequent written and oral forward-looking statements attributable to us or to persons acting on our behalf are expressly qualified in their entirety by the foregoing. These forward-looking statements speak only as of the date of the document in which they are made. We disclaim any obligation or undertaking to provide any updates or revisions to any forward-looking statement to reflect any change in our expectations or any change in events, conditions or circumstances in which the forward-looking statement is based.

Certain figures discussed below may not foot due to rounding.

Segment Reporting

We have three principal operating segments: our stores, direct business and our wholesale business. We consider our stores and direct business segments to be similar in terms of economic characteristics, production processes and operations, and have therefore aggregated them into one reportable segment, retail segment, consistent with our omni-channel business approach. Due to the immateriality of the wholesale segment’s revenues, profits and assets, its operating results have been aggregated with the retail segment for all periods.

COVID-19 Impact on our Business in Fiscal 2021

The COVID-19 pandemic and its variants continued to impact our business and results of operations in fiscal 2021. While we saw significant improvement in our business from fiscal 2020, substantial uncertainty remains regarding the impact of the pandemic, including the potential impact of new variants, continued disruptions in the supply chain, labor shortages and the long-term effect on the global economy, and overall consumer demand and spending.

Comparable Sales and E-Commerce (Direct) Sales Definition

Our customer’s shopping experience continues to evolve across multiple channels and we are continually adapting to meet the guest’s needs. The majority of our stores have the capability of fulfilling online orders if merchandise is not available in the warehouse. As a result, we continue to see more transactions that begin online but are ultimately completed at the store level. Similarly, if a customer visits a store and the item is out of stock, the associate can order the item through our website. A customer also has the ability to order online and pick-up in a store or at curbside. We define store sales as sales that originate and are fulfilled directly at the store level. E-commerce sales, which we also refer to as direct sales, are defined as sales that originate online, whether through our website, at the store level or through a third-party marketplace.

Stores that have been open for 13 months are included in comparable sales. Stores that have been remodeled or re-located during the period are also included in our determination of comparable stores sales. Stores that have been expanded by more than 25% are considered non-comparable for the first 13 months. If a store becomes a clearance center, it is also removed from the calculation of comparable sales. The method of calculating comparable sales varies across the retail industry and, as a result, our calculation of comparable sales is not necessarily comparable to similarly titled measures reported by other retailers.

The Company has not carved-out prior year sales for periods where the stores were temporarily closed in fiscal 2020 due to the pandemic. However, because the Company’s store in Canada was closed by government edict for a significant portion of fiscal 2021, we have removed it from the current calculation of comparable sales.

 

Non-GAAP Measures

We monitor certain non-GAAP financial measures on a regular basis in order to track the progress of our business. These measures include free cash flow, EBITDA, adjusted EBITDA and adjusted EBITDA margin. We believe these measures provide helpful information with respect to the Company’s operating performance and that the inclusion of these non-GAAP measures is important to assist investors in comparing our performance in fiscal 2021 to fiscal 2020 and fiscal 2019. We also provide certain forward-looking information with respect to certain of these non-GAAP financial measures. However, these measures may not be comparable to

 

24


 

similar measures used by other companies and should not be considered superior to or as a substitute for net income (loss), net income (loss) per diluted share or cash flow from operating activities in accordance with GAAP. See “Non-GAAP Reconciliations” below for additional information on these non-GAAP financial measures and reconciliations to comparable GAAP measures.

RESULTS OF OPERATIONS

Our fiscal year is a 52- or 53-week period ending on the Saturday closest to January 31. Fiscal 2021, fiscal 2020 and fiscal 2019 were all 52-week periods.

The following review of our results for fiscal 2021 includes certain comparisons against fiscal 2019 in addition to fiscal 2020. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic and its impact on our results, particularly during fiscal 2020, we believe that the additional discussion against fiscal 2019 provides a more meaningful comparison of our business results in fiscal 2021. Our Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended January 30, 2021 (fiscal 2020) includes a discussion and analysis of our financial condition and results of operations comparing fiscal 2020 to fiscal 2019 in Item 7 of Part II, “Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations.”

EXECUTIVE OVERVIEW

 

 

Fiscal 2021

 

 

 

Fiscal 2020

 

 

 

Fiscal 2019

 

 

 

(in millions, except for percentage of sales and per share data)

 

Sales

 

$

505.0

 

 

 

$

318.9

 

 

 

$

474.0

 

Net income (loss)

 

$

56.7

 

 

 

$

(64.5

)

 

 

$

(7.8

)

Adjusted EBITDA (Non-GAAP)

 

$

76.9

 

 

 

$

(24.2

)

 

 

$

23.5

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

As a percentage of sales:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Gross margin

 

 

49.5

%

 

 

 

32.9

%

 

 

 

43.1

%

SG&A expenses

 

 

34.2

%

 

 

 

40.5

%

 

 

 

38.1

%

Operating margin

 

 

12.3

%

 

 

 

(19.0

%)

 

 

 

(0.9

%)

Adjusted EBITDA margin (Non-GAAP)

 

 

15.2

%

 

 

 

(7.6

%)

 

 

 

5.0

%

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Per diluted share:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Net income (loss)

 

$

0.83

 

 

 

$

(1.26

)

 

 

$

(0.16

)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Liquidity:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cash flow from operating activities

 

$

75.5

 

 

 

$

(1.2

)

 

 

$

15.8

 

Free cash flow (Non-GAAP)

 

$

70.3

 

 

 

$

(5.5

)

 

 

$

2.4

 

 

For the first time in the Company's history, we exceeded $500.0 million in sales, with growth across all retail channels during fiscal 2021. As compared to fiscal 2019, our comparable sales increased 14.2% driven by a comparable sales increase in the direct business of 44.0% and an increase in stores of 4.8%. This growth was the result of new customer acquisition, which was up 27% over fiscal 2019, as well as increases in conversion rate and dollars per transaction. We achieved this top-line growth while maintaining a low promotional posture, resulting in a 300 basis point improvement in merchandise margins as compared to fiscal 2019. As a result of this margin improvement, coupled with our restructured lease portfolio and lower operating cost base, we reported net income for fiscal 2021 of $56.7 million, or $0.83 per diluted share, and adjusted EBITDA of $76.9 million.

We ended fiscal 2021 in a substantially stronger liquidity position than a year ago. As a result of our earnings, we generated $75.5 million in cash flows from operations during fiscal 2021, resulting in $70.3 million of free cash flow, which we used to retire our long-term debt, pay off our revolver and renegotiate our credit facility on more favorable terms. At January 29, 2022, we are debt-free and have cash on hand of $15.5 million and excess availability under our credit facility of $68.9 million.

Our primary objective for fiscal 2022 is to build off the many successes we had in fiscal 2021 by continuing to drive new customer acquisition and lifetime value through greater retention and new channels of distribution. We are excited about the growth we saw this year and believe that we gained market share during this fiscal year. However, we also recognize that our business benefited this year from many macro-level tailwinds as well, including emergence from the pandemic restrictions, pent-up demand, and fiscal stimulus policy which we do not expect to deliver the same sales lift in fiscal 2022. We are also cautious of the ongoing global issues that may impact us through fiscal 2022, including the Russian invasion of Ukraine, supply chain disruptions, increased freight costs, increased cost of raw materials, labor shortages and overall changes in consumer sentiment.

As discussed more fully below under “Liquidity and Capital Resources” subsequent to the end of fiscal 2021, our Board of Directors approved a stock repurchase plan, pursuant to which we can purchase up to $15.0 million of our outstanding common stock through March 15, 2023.

 

25


 

SALES

For fiscal 2021, total sales increased 58.3% to $505.0 million from $318.9 million for fiscal 2020 and increased 6.5% from $474.0 million in fiscal 2019.

As compared to fiscal 2020, comparable sales increased 68.5%, with stores up 98.1% and the direct business up 25.4%. The comparable sales increase from our stores is largely due to the fact that our stores in fiscal 2020 were closed for a period of time due to the pandemic and many operated with reduced hours after reopening. In fiscal 2021, our customers returned to in-person shopping and our stores out-performed our expectations. Despite the surge of customers returning to stores, our direct business continued to grow in fiscal 2021, primarily driven by increased sales from our dxl.com website and mobile app. We also saw continued sales growth through our third-party marketplace presence, which is attracting a new customer to DXL.

As compared to fiscal 2019, comparable sales increased 14.2%, primarily due to a comparable sales increase in the direct business of 44.0% and an increase in stores of 4.8%. The growth in our direct business is due largely to our website and the growth from our mobile app. While store traffic remained soft during fiscal 2021, we saw strong increases in conversion rates and dollars per transaction as compared to fiscal 2019. The majority of our stores improved their performance as compared to fiscal 2019, but our Southeast, Midwest and South Central stores generally outperformed the other regions of the country. We attribute this trend to the fact that some areas of the country lifted mandates earlier than others and customer comfort level regarding in-store shopping differed throughout the country.

For fiscal 2021, wholesale revenues were $5.4 million as compared to $16.6 million in fiscal 2020 and $12.5 million in fiscal 2019. While a significant portion of our wholesale revenues in fiscal 2020 were due to the sale of masks, our wholesale business was driven primarily by our relationship with Amazon. Based on several factors, including low margins, volatility in the global supply chain, increasing lead times and the shifting dynamics of the business, the Company and Amazon have agreed to end the wholesale relationship.

GROSS MARGIN

The gross margin rate for fiscal 2021, inclusive of occupancy costs, was 49.5% compared to 32.9% in or fiscal 2020 and 43.1% for fiscal 2019.

As compared to fiscal 2020, our gross margin rate improved by 1660 basis points, driven by an increase in merchandise margin of 860 basis points and an improvement in occupancy of 800 basis points due to the leveraging of sales. On a dollar basis, occupancy costs decreased $4.2 million, or 6.7% as a result of our lease renegotiations as well as closed stores.

As compared to fiscal 2019, our gross margin rate for the year improved by 640 basis points, driven by a 300 basis point improvement in merchandise margins and a 340 basis point improvement in occupancy costs. As a result of our lease renegotiations as well as closed stores, on a dollar basis, occupancy costs for fiscal 2021 decreased by $12.5 million, or 17.7%, as compared to fiscal 2019.

The improvement in merchandise margin in fiscal year 2021 was primarily driven by our low promotional strategy and low clearance levels. Partially offsetting the savings from the reduction in markdowns was the continuing increase in the cost of freight due to shortages of vessels for overseas product, port congestion, and labor shortages of truck drivers. We estimate that the supply chain disruptions negatively impacted gross margin by approximately 84 basis points and we expect that we will continue to experience cost increases related to these supply chain issues as well as due to the increase in the cost of certain raw materials, particularly cotton, well into fiscal 2022. In aggregate, we expect that gross margin for fiscal 2022 may be impacted by upwards of 200 basis points after factoring in freight, markdowns, and the increased cost of certain raw materials.

SELLING, GENERAL AND ADMINISTRATIVE EXPENSES

SG&A expenses as a percentage of sales were 34.2% for fiscal 2021, as compared to 40.5% in fiscal 2020 and 38.1% in fiscal 2019.

On a dollar basis, compared to fiscal 2020, SG&A expenses increased by $43.9 million primarily driven by an increase in variable costs as a result of our sales growth, including increases in store payroll and payroll-related costs, performance incentives and advertising. However, our costs as a percentage of sales significantly improved as a result of the cost-savings initiatives implemented in fiscal 2020.

On a dollar basis, compared to fiscal 2019, SG&A expenses for fiscal 2021 decreased $7.7 million. The decrease in SG&A expenses for the year was primarily due to the cost-savings initiatives implemented in fiscal 2020 and reductions in payroll and payroll-related costs. These costs were partially offset by an increase in incentive performance-based accruals and the reinstatement of our 401(k) profit sharing contribution.

Management views SG&A expenses through two primary cost centers: Customer Facing Costs and Corporate Support Costs. Customer Facing Costs, which include store payroll, marketing and other store operating costs, represented 19.1% of sales for fiscal 2021, compared to 20.2% of sales for fiscal 2020 and 22.6% of sales for fiscal 2019. Corporate Support Costs, which include the

 

26


 

distribution center and corporate overhead costs, represented 15.1% of sales, compared to 20.3% of sales for fiscal 2020 and 15.5% of sales for fiscal 2019.

IMPAIRMENT OF ASSETS

Asset impairment charges primarily represent the write-down of operating lease right-of-use assets, where the carrying value exceeds fair value, and the write-down of store property and equipment. In addition, any subsequent gains recognized in connection with a store closure related to a previously recorded operating lease right-of-use asset impairment will be included as an offset to impairment charges, with the remainder of the gain included as a reduction in store occupancy costs.

For fiscal 2021, the Company recorded a non-cash gain of $2.7 million on the reduction of its operating lease liability in connection with its decision to close certain retail stores, which resulted in a revaluation of the lease liability. Of the total non-cash gain, $2.3 million related to leases where the right-of-use assets had previously been impaired, and therefore, the gain was recorded as a reduction of the previously-recorded impairment. The remaining gain $0.4 million was recorded as a reduction to occupancy costs.

For fiscal 2020, the asset impairment charge was $14.8 million, which included $13.3 for the write-down of operating lease right-of-use assets and $4.1 million for the write-down of store assets, partially offset by a non-cash gain of $2.6 million. The asset impairment charge for fiscal 2019 was $0.9 million, which included $0.7 million for the write-down of right-of-use assets and $0.2 million for the write-down of store assets.

DEPRECIATION AND AMORTIZATION

Depreciation and amortization expense was $17.2 million, as compared to $21.5 million in fiscal 2020 and $24.6 million for fiscal 2019. Our depreciation expense has been decreasing over the past few years, due to our reduced capital expenditures.

INTEREST EXPENSE, NET

Net interest expense for fiscal 2021 was $4.4 million, as compared to $3.9 million for fiscal 2020 and $3.3 million for fiscal 2019. The interest expense for fiscal 2021 includes a prepayment penalty of $1.1 million in connection with the Company's early prepayment of its $17.5 million FILO loan as well as $0.9 million for the write-off unamortized debt issuance costs associated with both the FILO loan and our prior credit facility. These costs were partially offset by a decrease in interest expense due to reduced borrowing levels in fiscal 2021 as compared to fiscal 2020 and fiscal 2019.

INCOME TAXES

Realization of our deferred tax assets, which relate principally to federal net operating loss carryforwards, of which approximately $100.7 million will expire from fiscal 2028 through fiscal 2037, is dependent on generating sufficient taxable income. In addition, there are $43.1 million of federal net operating loss carryforwards that do not expire.

At the end of fiscal 2013, we entered a three-year cumulative loss and based on all positive and negative evidence at February 1, 2014, we established a full valuation allowance against our net deferred tax assets. Although we returned to profitability in fiscal 2021, we believe that a full valuation allowance remains appropriate at this time. Our conclusion is based on the fact that we remain in a three-year cumulative loss position, which is considered significant negative evidence. Once we transition to a three-year cumulative profit position and demonstrate more consistent and prolonged profitability, we will reevaluate the valuation allowance.

Our tax provision for fiscal 2021 was primarily due to income tax in states where NOL usage is statutorily limited. Our tax provision for fiscal 2020 was primarily due to state margin tax, based on gross receipts less certain deductions. See Note F of the Notes to the Consolidated Financial Statements.

NET INCOME (LOSS )

Net income for fiscal 2021 was $56.7 million, or $0.83 per diluted share, as compared to a net loss of $(64.5) million, or $(1.26) per diluted share, in fiscal 2020 and a net loss of $(7.8) million, or $(0.16) per diluted share, in fiscal 2019. The improvement in earnings for fiscal 2021 was due to an increase in our comparable sales as compared to both fiscal 2020 and fiscal 2019, an improvement in gross margin driven by lower markdowns and restructured lease portfolio, and a reduction in operating costs, as a percentage of sales, as a result of our cost-savings initiatives implemented in fiscal 2020. In addition, our significant net operating loss carryforwards minimized our cash tax payments.

Included in our results for fiscal 2021 was a gain of $2.3 million against previously recognized impairment charges. Results for fiscal 2020 and fiscal 2019 included asset impairment charges of $14.8 million and $0.9 million, respectively. Fiscal 2019 also included charges of $1.7 million for exit costs associated with our London operations and $0.7 million in CEO transition costs.

 

27


 

SEASONALITY

A comparison of sales in each quarter of the past three fiscal years is presented below. The sales results for fiscal 2020 reflect the impact that the COVID-19 pandemic had on the Company’s business, especially in the first and second quarters when we temporarily closed all of our stores in response to the pandemic. The amounts shown are also not necessarily indicative of actual trends, because such amounts also reflect the addition of new stores and the remodeling and closing of other stores during these periods. Consistent with the retail apparel industry, our business is seasonal. (Certain columns may not foot due to rounding)

 

(in millions, except percentages)

 

Fiscal 2021

 

 

Fiscal 2020

 

 

Fiscal 2019

 

First quarter

 

$

111.5

 

 

 

22.1

%

 

$

57.2

 

 

 

17.9

%

 

$

113.0

 

 

 

23.8

%

Second quarter

 

 

138.6

 

 

 

27.4

%

 

 

76.4

 

 

 

24.0

%

 

 

123.2

 

 

 

26.0

%

Third quarter

 

 

121.5

 

 

 

24.1

%

 

 

85.2

 

 

 

26.7

%

 

 

106.6

 

 

 

22.1

%

Fourth quarter

 

 

133.5

 

 

 

26.4

%

 

 

100.1

 

 

 

31.4

%

 

 

131.2

 

 

 

27.7

%

 

 

$

505.0

 

 

 

100.0

%

 

$

318.9

 

 

 

100.0

%

 

$

474.0

 

 

 

100.0

%

 

EFFECTS OF INFLATION

During fiscal 2021, we began to be impacted by the effects of the inflationary pressures on freight, raw materials, and labor. We have taken selective price increases on our merchandise assortment to mitigate the pressure on gross margin. If such inflationary pressures increase, the effects may have an increased impact on our financial results in fiscal 2022.

LIQUIDITY AND CAPITAL RESOURCES

Our primary sources of liquidity are cash generated from operations and availability under our credit facility, which is discussed below. We took several actions during fiscal 2020 to preserve our liquidity, and in the first quarter of fiscal 2021, we further strengthened our liquidity position by completing a direct offering of our common stock, which raised $4.4 million, net of offering costs. Also in the first quarter of fiscal 2021, we refinanced our then existing $15.0 million FILO loan by entering into a new $17.5 million FILO loan, which increased our borrowing capacity. As a result of our improved earnings and free cash flow, in the third quarter of fiscal 2021, we used a portion of the excess cash flow to prepay the FILO loan, which bore an interest rate of 8.50%. At January 29, 2022, we had no outstanding debt, including no borrowings under our credit facility.

At January 29, 2022, our material contractual obligations primarily consisted of our operating lease obligations, as disclosed in Note E, Leases, to the Notes to the Consolidated Financial Statements. In addition to our lease obligations, at January 29, 2022, we were also contractually committed pursuant to a merchandise purchase obligation to meet minimum purchases of $10.0 million in each fiscal year through fiscal 2023.

We believe our cash on hand, availability under our credit facility, and ongoing cash generated from our operations will be sufficient to fund our working capital requirements, commitments, capital expenditures and, as discussed further below, our stock repurchase program which was announced in March 2022. However, we remain cautious regarding the effect that the pandemic could have on consumer sentiment and the geopolitical impact of Russia's invasion of Ukraine on our business and the global economy.

The following table sets forth financial data regarding our liquidity position at the end of the past three fiscal years:

 

(in millions)

 

Fiscal 2021

 

 

Fiscal 2020

 

 

Fiscal 2019

 

Cash flow from operating activities

 

$

75.5

 

 

$

(1.2

)

 

$

15.8

 

Capital expenditures

 

 

(5.3

)

 

 

(4.2

)

 

 

(13.4

)

Free Cash Flow (Non-GAAP)

 

$

70.3

 

 

$

(5.5

)

 

$

2.4

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cash on hand, at year end

 

$

15.5

 

 

$

19.0

 

 

$

4.3

 

Total debt, net of unamortized debt issuance costs

 

$

-

 

 

$

74.4

 

 

$

54.1

 

Unused excess availability under Credit Facility

 

$

68.9

 

 

$

11.5

 

 

$

48.5

 

 

 

28


 

Credit Facility

On October 28, 2021, we entered into a new $125.0 million revolving credit agreement, which replaced our prior credit facility that was due to expire in May 2023 (the "New Credit Facility"). The New Credit Facility has a five-year term and provides more favorable terms than the previous credit facility. The New Credit Facility includes a sublimit of $20.0 million for commercial and standby letters of credit and a sublimit of up to $15.0 million for swingline loans. Borrowings made pursuant to the New Credit Facility will be made pursuant to either a Base Rate loan or LIBOR Rate loan, at the Company's option. Base Rate loans will bear interest, at a rate equal to (i) the greater of: (a) the Prime Rate, (b) the Federal Funds effective rate plus 0.50% per annum and (c) the daily LIBOR rate plus 1.00% per annum, plus (ii) a varying percentage, based on the Company’s average excess availability, of either 0.25% or 0.50%. LIBOR Rate loans, which may be either for 1 month or 3 months, will bear interest at (i) the LIBOR rate, or the Benchmark Rate as defined in the credit agreement plus (ii) a varying percentage based on the Company’s average excess availability, of either 1.25% or 1.50%.

We had no outstanding borrowings under the New Credit Facility at January 29, 2022. At January 29, 2022, outstanding standby letters of credit were $2.7 million and outstanding documentary letters of credit of $1.4 million. The average monthly borrowing outstanding under the credit facilities during fiscal 2021 was approximately $16.4 million, resulting in an average unused excess availability of approximately $56.2 million. Unused excess availability at January 29, 2022 was $68.9 million. Our obligations under the New Credit Facility are secured by a lien on substantially all of our assets.

Our New Credit Facility is described in more detail in Note D to the Notes to the Consolidated Financial Statements.

FILO Loan

In March 2021, we refinanced our existing $15.0 million FILO loan (the “existing FILO loan”) and entered into a new $17.5 million FILO loan (the “new FILO loan”). The new FILO loan had higher advance rates, provided additional borrowing capacity of approximately $5.0 to $10.0 million, and carried an interest rate of 8.50%. The terms of the new FILO loan included a prepayment penalty, if any portion of the principal for the new FILO Loan was prepaid during the initial two-year period, equal to the greater of (i) the incremental interest that would have been incurred with respect to that principal repayment during the two year period and (ii) 3% of the principal prepayment, unless the prepayment occurs after March 16, 2022 in connection with the Company’s renegotiation of its Credit Agreement in which case the prepayment premium would be equal to 1% of the principal prepayment.

On September 3, 2021, we prepaid the outstanding balance of $17.5 million under the new FILO loan. In connection with the prepayment, we negotiated a reduced prepayment penalty of $1.1 million and wrote-off unamortized debt issuance costs of $0.9 million. At January 29, 2022, the Company has no outstanding long-term debt.

Stock Repurchase Program

Subsequent to the end of fiscal 2022, our Board of Directors approved a stock repurchase plan. Under the stock repurchase plan, we may purchase up to $15.0 million of our common stock through open market and privately negotiated transactions during fiscal 2022. The timing and the amount of any repurchases of common stock will be determined based on the Company’s evaluation of market conditions and other factors. The stock repurchase program is expected to commence in the first quarter of fiscal 2022 and will expire on March 15, 2023 but may be suspended, terminated or modified at any time for any reason. We expect to finance the repurchases from operating funds and/or periodic borrowings on our credit facility. Any repurchased common stock will be held as treasury stock.

INVENTORY

At January 29, 2022, total inventories decreased to $81.8 million from $85.0 million at January 30, 2021 and $102.4 million at February 1, 2020. Maintaining sufficient inventory levels, given the ongoing supply chain disruptions, remains a primary focus. We believe that we have secured sufficient inventory to support our current sales forecast. We are continuing to manage our inventory conservatively, narrowing our assortments and increasing exclusivity with our national brands. As a result, we were able to increase our inventory turnover to over 2.0 times as compared to historical turnover of approximately 1.5 times. At January 29, 2022, our clearance inventory was 6.0% of our inventory as compared to 10.4% at January 30, 2021 and 10.0% at February 1, 2020.

OFF-BALANCE SHEET ARRANGEMENTS

We have no off-balance sheet arrangements as defined by 303(a)(4) of Regulation S-K.

 

29


 

CAPITAL EXPENDITURES

The following table sets forth the open stores and related square footage at January 29, 2022 and January 30, 2021 respectively:

 

 

 

At January 29, 2022

 

 

At January 30, 2021

 

Store Concept

 

Number of
Stores

 

 

Square
Footage

 

 

Number of
Stores

 

 

Square
Footage

 

(square footage in thousands)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

DXL Retail

 

 

220

 

 

 

1,678

 

 

 

226

 

 

 

1,718

 

DXL Outlet

 

 

16

 

 

 

80

 

 

 

17

 

 

 

82

 

Casual Male XL Retail

 

 

35

 

 

 

115