FINANCE

Publix net earnings edge up in Q2

BY Dan Berthiaume

Lakeland, Fla. – Net earnings at Publix Super Markets slightly increased to $404.1 million in the second quarter of fiscal 2014 from $400.1 million in the year-ago period.

Net sales rose about 7% to $7.5 billion from $7 billion, aided by the shift of the Easter holiday to the second quarter of the current fiscal year from the first quarter of the previous fiscal year. Same-store sales rose 6.3%.

Effective Aug. 1, 2014, Publix’s stock price increased from $32.50 per share to $33.85 per share. (Publix stock is not publicly traded and is made available for sale only to current Publix associates and members of its board of directors.)

“This is our eighth consecutive quarter with an increase in our stock price,” stated Publix CEO Ed Crenshaw. “Our associate owners deserve the credit for continuing to make us a leader in our industry.”

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FINANCE

Ingles Markets swings to profit in Q3

BY Dan Berthiaume

Asheville, N.C. – Ingles Markets Inc. swung to a profit of $13.83 million in the third quarter of fiscal 2014 from a net loss of $14.42 million in the third quarter of the prior fiscal year. The elimination of debt refinancing costs from the previous fiscal year helped push Ingles Markets into the black.

Net sales rose 5% to $978.26 million from $934.01 million. Same-store sales increased 2.1%, benefiting from an Easter shift to the third quarter of fiscal 2014 from the second quarter of the previous fiscal year.

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MARKETING/SOCIAL MEDIA

Study: Out-of-stocks affect back-to-school shopping

BY Dan Berthiaume

San Francisco – Out-of-stocks and placement continue to be key issues for back-to-school retail efforts. According to a field study of 465 retailers across the U.S. from mobile contractor Gigwalk, 47% of the retailers visited had an issue with their back-to-school displays.

Forty-five percent were due to the product being out of stock, followed by missing price and having the product in the wrong display. Other findings include:

• 49% plan to spend more this back-to-school season.

• When asked what steps a shopper would take if a particular item was not available 48% said they would purchase at a different store and 36% said they would buy another brand!

• Seventy-seven percent of respondents said they did not plan to do their back-to-school shopping online.

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