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Hibbett Sports profit drops 21% amid higher costs

BY Marianne Wilson

Birmingham, Ala. — Hibbett Sports profit in the second quarter declined 21% amid higher store operating, selling and administrative expenses. Net income for the 13-week period ended August 2, 2014, was $8.4 million compared with $10.5 million for the 13-week period ended August 3, 2013

Net sales for the quarter increased 4.1% to $193.9 million compared with $186.2 million for the 13-week period ended August 3, 2013. Same-store sales edged up 0.1%.

“Comparable store sales were softer than expected for the quarter, but we are encouraged by the improvement in traffic in early August,” said Jeff Rosenthal, president and CEO. “In addition, we are on pace to achieve our goal of 75 to 80 new stores this year, and continue to be pleased with new store performance. Our new wholesale and logistics facility continues to show significant productivity gains, and we look forward to the benefits this facility will provide.”

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Foot Locker Q2 profit, sales top estimates

BY Marianne Wilson

New York — Foot Locker on Friday turned in another winning performance, posting sales and income for the second quarter that topped analysts’ estimates.

Net income for the quarter increased to $92 million, from $66 million in the year-ago period.

Total sales increased 12.9%, to $1.64 billion, compared with $1.45 billion for the corresponding prior-year period. Excluding the effect of foreign currency fluctuations, total sales for the second quarter increased 11.7%.

Same-store sales rose 7%. Analysts had predicted a gain of 5.4%.

“The team at Foot Locker once again achieved record levels of sales and profits in the second quarter, and I am extremely proud of their efforts," said Ken C. Hicks, chairman and CEO. "We delivered excellent financial and operational results through the outstanding execution of our strategic priorities. This continues to be a winning formula for us, and we remain committed to taking full advantage of the many opportunities we have identified — over the near, intermediate, and longer terms — to continue producing a consistent, strong performance."

During the second quarter, Foot Locker repurchased approximately 1.33 million shares of its common stock for $66 million.

"So far this year, we have returned $200 million of cash to our shareholders through our dividend and share repurchase programs," said Lauren B. Peters, executive VP and CFO. "Our strong financial position has enabled us to consistently increase those programs in recent years while we have also made substantial investments in the business, including the $220 million of capital expenditures we are targeting for fiscal 2014."

As of Aug. 2, the company operated 3,460 stores in 23 countries in North America, Europe, Australia, and New Zealand. In addition, 47 franchised Foot Locker stores were operating in the Middle East and South Korea, as well as 27 franchised Runners Point and Sidestep stores in Germany and Switzerland.

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RockTenn expands store-within-store capability

BY CSA STAFF

Leading packaging solutions provider RockTenn acquired the AGI In-Store point-of-purchase display and fixture business from American Greetings.

AGI In-Store is a non-core division of American Greetings that manufactures point-of-purchase displays and fixtures for the consumer products and retail industries and employs roughly 300 people at its Forest City, N.C., facility. As a result of the acquisition, AGI In-Store will now go to market as RockTenn In-Store Solutions.

"AGI In-Store is an excellent strategic fit with RockTenn Merchandising Displays," said Craig Gunckel, EVP of merchandising displays and folding carton with RockTenn. "Adding AGI In-Store supports our strategy to provide a more holistic portfolio of innovative in-store marketing solutions, including 'store-within-a-store' displays."

"We are pleased that the impressive business model of AGI In-Store will be able to expand to its fullest potential under RockTenn's ownership," said Zev Weiss, Co-CEO of American Greetings. "We look forward to maintaining our long-standing relationship with the company as one of its customers for retail fixtures."

RockTenn is one of North America's leading providers of packaging solutions and manufacturers of containerboard and paperboard. The company’s 26,000 employees work at numerous locations in United States, Canada, Mexico, Chile and Argentina.

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