FINANCE

Fred’s 3Q Profit Slips 23%, Exploring Options

BY CSA STAFF

Memphis Tenn., Fred’s Inc. said Thursday its third-quarter profit fell 23% primarily on a shift in costs and that it is exploring strategic and financial options after receiving inquiries from some parties.

Earnings for the period ended Nov. 3 slid to $4.6 million compared with $6 million in the prior year.

Revenue for the quarter rose to $419.9 million, up 3% from $407.9 million in the previous year. Meanwhile, same-store sales climbed 1% during the quarter compared with a 3% increase a year ago.

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Dress Barn reports 3% 1Q comps decline

BY CSA STAFF

SUFFERN, N.Y. Dress Barn Tuesday reported that total net sales for the first quarter of fiscal year 2008 were $363.7 million, an increase of 1.5% over $358.4 million for the same quarter a year ago. According to the company, the increase in net sales resulted from the opening of new stores, partially offset by a same-store sales decline of 3%.

Net earnings for the first fiscal quarter decreased to $19.6 million from $27.4 million for the same period of the prior year. Diluted earnings per share for the first quarter were 30 cents versus 40 cents per share in the same period of fiscal 2007.

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Hy-Vee teams up with Crown Poly

BY CSA STAFF

DES MOINES, Ia. Grocery retailer Hy-Vee is making environmentally conscious decisions by reducing plastic bag use.

According to reports, the company has partnered with California-based Crown Poly to offer the Hippo Sak front-end bagging system.

Hippo Sak is a patented, reinforced, bottom seal T-shirt bag, which can carry over 26 one-pound cans without breaking or tearing holes at the bottom. The bags can hold 10-12 items per bag compared to the current national average of 3.4 items, and can replace upward to three current plastic bags.

Hippo Sak achieved an annualized reduction in bag use of over 25%.

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