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Supervalu Q4 profit beats Street, will remodel 55 to 75 units in 2011

BY CSA STAFF

Minneapolis — Supervalu reported Thursday that net income for the quarter ended Feb. 26 slipped 2% to $95 million, compared with $97 million in the year-ago period, but results still beat Wall Street expectations.

Performance was impacted by softer sales, which dropped 6% to $8.66 billion, missing Wall Street’s estimate of $8.73 billion. Same-store sales fell 5%.

Supervalu, which operates Albertsons, Jewel-Osco and Save-A-Lot chains, launched a turnaround plan more than a year ago.

“Our transformation initiatives helped us execute more effective promotions that contributed to stronger-than-anticipated results," CEO and president Craig Herkert said in a statement.

The company said that capital spending for fiscal 2012 is projected at $700 to $750 million, which will include 55 to 75 store remodels and 210 hard-discount stores, including licensed locations. No new traditional retail supermarkets are planned for fiscal 2012.

On an annual basis, the grocer reported it lost $1.51 billion, compared with earnings of $393 million in the previous year.

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A pen is mightier when recycled

BY CSA STAFF

BOCA RATON, Fla. — Office Depot announced that, from April 17 through April 23, it is inviting customers to trade in their used writing instruments regardless of brand to any of its retail stores nationwide.In exchange for ten pens, pencils or markers, customers will receive a coupon toward a new product from Newell Rubbermaid Office Products. The collected instruments will be sent to TerraCycle to be turned into new office supply products ranging from trash cans to desk organizers.

“More than ever, our customers are aware of the choices and behaviors that impact the world around us, and as a global provider of office products it is our responsibility to offer green solutions to contribute to a cleaner and healthier community,” said Steve Mahurin, EVP merchandising Office Depot.

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Negative idents drive Supervalu sales down

BY CSA STAFF

MINNEAPOLIS — Supervalu reported net sales of $8.7 billion for the fiscal 2011 fourth quarter, compared with sales of $9.2 billion for the same period last year. Supervalu’s fourth-quarter net earnings were $95 million, or 44 cents per diluted share, compared with net earning of $97 million, or 46 cents per diluted share the company reported last year.

“In the fourth quarter, our transformation initiatives helped us execute more effective promotions that contributed to stronger than anticipated results,” said Craig Herkert, Supervalu’s CEO and president. “This provides us a foundation to continue to deliver upon our business transformation plan as we move into fiscal 2012.”

The company reported that fourth-quarter retail net sales were $6.7 billion compared with $7.2 billion last year. According to Safeway, the retail sales decline was due to a 5% decrease in identical-store sales, store closures and market exits.

For the fiscal year 2011, Safeway reported net sales of $37.5 billion and a net loss of $1.51 billion, or $7.13 per diluted share.In fiscal 2010, the company reported net sales of $40.6 billion and net earnings of $393 million, or $1.85 per diluted share.

For fiscal 2012, Supervalu said it expects net sales of approximately $37.5 billion and identical-store sales, excluding fuel, to be down between 1.5% and 2.5%.

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