Williams-Sonoma Inc WSM
Q4 2012 Earnings Call Transcript

Transcript Call Date 03/19/2013

Operator: Ladies and gentlemen, thank you for standing by. Welcome to the Williams-Sonoma, Incorporated Fourth Quarter and Fiscal Year 2012 Earnings Conference Call. At this time, all participants are in listen-only mode. We will conduct a question-and-answer session after the presentation. This conference is being recorded.

I would now like to turn the call over to Steve Nelson, Vice President of Investor Relations, to discuss non-GAAP measures and forward-looking statements.

Stephen C. Nelson - VP, IR: Good afternoon. This call should be considered in conjunction with the press releases that we issued earlier today. Our earnings press release and this call contain non-GAAP financial measures that exclude the impact of unusual business events. A reconciliation of these non-GAAP financial measures to most directly comparable GAAP financial measures and an explanation of why these non-GAAP financial measures are useful are discussed in the earnings release.

This call also contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, which addresses the financial condition, results of operations, business initiatives, trends, guidance, growth plans, and prospects of the Company in 2013 and beyond and are subject to risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from such forward-looking statements. Please refer to the Company's current press releases and SEC filings, including the most recent 10-Q, for more information on these risks and uncertainties. The Company undertakes no obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements to reflect events or circumstances that may arise after the date of this call.

I will now turn the conference call over to Laura Alber, our President and Chief Executive Officer, to discuss our fourth quarter and fiscal year 2012 results and our outlook for Q1 and fiscal year 2013.

Laura J. Alber - President and CEO: Thanks Steve. Good afternoon and thank you for joining us. On the call with me today are Julie Whalen, our Chief Financial Officer and Pat Connolly, our Chief Marketing Officer.

Before we begin, I'd like to discuss the leadership change that we announced earlier this afternoon. Richard Harvey, President of Williams-Sonoma Brand, has resigned and will be the leaving the Company. Over the 18 years that we have worked together, Richard has been an exceptional business partner as well as a great friend to me. Richard has worked at our Company for 30 years and leaves an enduring legacy. We thank him for his service and commitment and we will miss him.

Janet Hayes, currently the President of Pottery Barn Kids and Pottery Barn Teen, will become the President of the Williams-Sonoma Brand. And through the end of our fiscal first quarter Richard will work with Janet to ensure a smooth transition.

Sandra Stangl, President of Pottery Barn, will now lead Pottery Barn, Pottery Barn Kids and Pottery Barn Teen. We congratulate Janet and Sandra on their roles at our Company and look forward to their continued success.

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