Sears Canada net loss expands in difficult Q1
Toronto – Sears Canada more than doubled its net loss year-over-year to $75.2 million, from $31.2 million in a difficult first quarter of fiscal 2014. Expenses related to the closure of stores and severance of personnel played a major role in the growth of the retailer’s net loss.
In addition, revenues dropped 11% to $771.7 million from $867.1 million and same-store sales declined 7.6%. Sears cited poor weather as dampening sales performance, although it said it was able to clear fall and winter inventory as a result of unseasonably cold weather.
"The unseasonable weather had an adverse effect on our revenues," said Douglas C. Campbell, president and CEO, Sears Canada Inc. "Sales of spring merchandise were below last year, as winter-like weather was prevalent in most parts of the country well into the new season with cooler temperatures and significantly more snow in many areas. However, we took advantage of the extended winter and cleared a significant quantity of fall and winter carryover, virtually emptying our stockrooms and getting it in front of the customer.”
Aaron’s names two new VPs
Atlanta – Lease-to-own retailer Aaron’s Inc. has named Sharon Lawrence VP finance and Kirby Salgado as VP merchandising. Lawrence, formerly Aaron’s director of franchise finance, joined Aaron’s in 2012 after a 25-plus year career at SunTrust Bank, while Salgado most recently served as VP/general merchandise manager for Sears Holdings.
"Sharon was instrumental in raising the financing for Aaron’s acquisition of Progressive Finance," said Steve Michaels, Aaron’s president. "In her brief two years at Aaron’s, she’s demonstrated tremendous value and has built great relationships for the company with our banking group. She will be an outstanding VP of finance while leading the Aaron’s, Inc. finance team going forward. Additionally, after a national search, we’re pleased to welcome Kirby Salgado to Aaron’s as VP of merchandising. His extensive experience in sourcing and merchandising leadership will provide immediate results in driving cost efficiencies while securing the quality, brand-name products that our customers expect and deserve from Aaron’s.”
PetSmart net income grows in Q1; same-store sales miss
Phoenix – PetSmart Inc. posted a 1.3% increase in net income during the first quarter of fiscal 2014, rising to $104 million from $102 million in the first quarter of the prior year. Net sales increased 1.1% to $1.7 billion, but same-store sales missed Wall Street expectations by falling 0.6%.
PetSmart cited a challenging and volatile consumer environment and a competitive market as contributing to its weaker-than-anticipated same-store sales results.
Looking ahead, the company anticipates same-store sales for the full year to remain relatively flat, net sales growth in the low-single digits and earnings per share to range between $4.29 and $4.39. For the second quarter, the company anticipates comparable-store sales growth to remain flat or decrease slightly and earnings per share of $0.92 to $0.96.
“We are pleased with the company’s ability to achieve earnings per share growth of 6.1% while continuing to drive earnings before tax margin expansion during the first quarter,” said PetSmart president and CEO David Lenhardt. “However, we did not achieve our sales goals, which were impacted by a challenging and volatile consumer environment and a competitive market.”