Reuters

(Reuters)

Macy's Full-Year Profit Estimate Tops Forecast

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Department store chain Macy's Inc (M) estimated full-year 2014 profit to be higher than its previous forecast and said it would buy luxury beauty and spa services retailer Bluemercury Inc for $210 million.

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The company said comparable-store sales at owned stores rose 2 percent in the fourth quarter as more people visited its stores during the holiday season.

Bluemercury operates about 60 stores in 18 states in the United States, most of which also have in-house spas.

Macy's said Bluemercury would operate as a standalone business and would continue to be led by Marla and Barry Beck, who co-founded the company in 1999.

The company also announced a slew of appointments aimed at streamlining its online, store and marketing divisions.

Jeff Gennette will relinquish his responsibilities as Macy's chief merchandising officer and will be succeeded by Timothy Baxter, who was the company's general merchandise manager for ready-to-wear.

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Gennette will oversee merchandising and marketing of Macy's stores and digital and private brand product development, the company said.

Macy said it expects a 2014 profit of $4.35-$4.37 per share, higher than its previous forecast of $4.25-$4.35 per share.

Analysts on average were expecting a profit of $4.35 per share, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.

Macy's shares were slightly down in after-market trading on Thursday. (Reporting by Ramkumar Iyer in Bengaluru; Editing by Saumyadeb Chakrabarty)