SpartanNash announces 3Q FY2016 consolidated net sales increased by 1.4% vs. same period previous year

  • Consolidated Net Sales Increased 1.4% Despite Prolonged Deflationary Environment
  • Reported Third Quarter EPS from Continuing Operations Improved $0.05 to $0.45 per Diluted Share; Adjusted Third Quarter EPS from Continuing Operations Improved $0.04 to $0.53 per Diluted Share
  • Announced Definitive Agreement to Acquire Caito Foods Service

Byron Center, MI, 2016-Nov-10 — /EPR Retail News/ — SpartanNash Company (the “Company”) (Nasdaq: SPTN) today (Nov 9, 2016) reported financial results for the 12-week third quarter and 40-week period ended October 8, 2016.

Third Quarter Results

Consolidated net sales for the 12-week third quarter increased to $1.80 billion from $1.78 billion in the prior year quarter, driven primarily by increases in the food distribution segment.

Reported operating earnings improved to $29.9 million from $29.2 million in the prior year quarter primarily due to sales growth at food distribution and lower operating expenses due in part to lower depreciation as well as productivity and efficiency initiatives, which offset the negative impact of deflation in all segments. Adjusted operating earnings improved to $35.1 million from $34.8 million in the prior year quarter.

Reported earnings from continuing operations for the third quarter increased to $16.7 million, or $0.45 per diluted share, from $15.2 million, or $0.40 per diluted share, in the prior year quarter. Reported earnings from continuing operations for the third quarter include a $0.02 per diluted share benefit associated with tax credits. Adjusted earnings from continuing operations for the third quarter increased to $20.1 million, or $0.53 per diluted share, from $18.6 million, or $0.49 per diluted share, in the prior year quarter. Current year adjusted earnings from continuing operations exclude net after-tax charges of $0.08 per diluted share primarily related to asset impairment and restructuring charges associated with the Company’s retail store rationalization plan as well as merger integration activities. Prior year adjusted earnings from continuing operations exclude net after-tax charges of $0.09 per diluted share primarily related to merger integration and acquisition expenses, as well as net restructuring and asset impairment charges. Adjusted earnings from continuing operations is a non-GAAP operating financial measure.

Adjusted Earnings Before Interest, Taxes, Depreciation and Amortization (Adjusted EBITDA) was $53.4 million, or 3.0 percent of consolidated net sales, compared to $55.2 million, or 3.1 percent of consolidated net sales in the prior year quarter. Adjusted EBITDA is a non-Generally Accepted Accounting Principles (GAAP) financial measure. Please see the financial tables at the end of this press release for a reconciliation of net earnings to Adjusted EBITDA, and a reconciliation of each non-GAAP financial measure to the most directly comparable measure prepared and presented in accordance with GAAP.

“We are pleased with our ability to overcome the continued challenging economic conditions and prolonged deflationary environment to deliver third quarter sales and earnings growth,” stated Dennis Eidson, SpartanNash’s Chief Executive Officer. “These results reflect the strength of our strategy to provide innovative and impactful solutions for our food distribution and retail customers as we benefited from new customer supply agreements and our third consecutive quarter of improved retail comparable store sales trends. During the quarter, we continued to invest in our merchandising, pricing and promotional initiatives, including expanded produce and private brand product offerings, as well as the continued roll out of Open Acres™. We also celebrated the grand re-openings of our newly remodeled Omaha stores with encouraging results. In addition, we realized further benefits from our ongoing investments in our supply chain network.”

Gross profit margin for the third quarter was 14.2 percent compared to 14.6 percent in the prior year quarter primarily due to the mix of business operations and the impact of continued deflation.

Reported operating expenses for the third quarter decreased to $225.4 million, or 12.5 percent of sales, from $229.8 million, or 12.9 percent of sales, in the prior year quarter. Third quarter operating expenses would have been $220.2 million, or 12.2 percent of net sales, compared to $224.3 million, or 12.6 percent of net sales in the prior year quarter, if restructuring, asset impairment, and merger integration charges were excluded from both periods. The decrease as a rate to sales was primarily due to lower depreciation expense associated with fully depreciated assets and lower occupancy costs, as well as improved operating expense leverage resulting from sales growth and ongoing productivity and efficiency initiatives.

Food Distribution Segment

Net sales for the food distribution segment increased to $804.5 million from $762.3 million in the prior year quarter primarily due to new business gains as well as the growth of certain existing accounts, which more than offset the impact of continued deflation.

Reported operating earnings for the food distribution segment increased to $19.0 million from $16.5 million in the prior year quarter. Third quarter adjusted operating earnings increased to $19.8 million from $17.0 million in the prior year quarter. The increases were due to higher sales, supply chain improvements, and lower depreciation expense, partially offset by costs associated with a water main break, transition-related expenses associated with warehouse consolidation efforts, and continued deflation. Third quarter adjusted operating earnings exclude $0.8 million of net pre-tax charges primarily related to merger integration expenses. The prior year third quarter excludes $0.5 million of pre-tax charges related to merger integration and acquisition costs and other charges associated with cost reduction initiatives. Adjusted operating earnings is a non-GAAP operating financial measure. Please see the financial tables at the end of this press release for a reconciliation of operating earnings to adjusted operating earnings by segment.

Retail Segment

Net sales for the retail segment were $489.0 million in the third quarter compared to $507.2 million for the prior year quarter. Comparable store sales for the quarter, excluding fuel, improved to -1.8 percent from -3.0 percent in the second quarter. Despite the sequential improvements in comparable store sales as well as higher fuel gallons, the ongoing deflationary environment and continued challenging economic conditions, particularly in certain western geographies, contributed to the lower sales at retail. Specifically, the decrease in net sales was attributable to the negative comparable store sales, excluding fuel; $7.9 million in lower sales resulting from retail store closures; and $3.8 million due to lower retail fuel prices compared to the prior year.

Reported operating earnings in the retail segment were $8.0 million compared to $9.2 million in the prior year quarter. Adjusted operating earnings were $12.4 million compared to $13.2 million in the prior year quarter. Current year adjusted operating earnings exclude $4.4 million of pre-tax asset impairment and restructuring charges and merger integration expenses. The prior year third quarter excludes $4.0 million of pre-tax merger integration and acquisition costs, and net asset impairment charges. The decrease in adjusted operating earnings was primarily due to lower comparable store sales volumes and the impact of deflation, partially offset by favorable rebate programs, lower occupancy costs, and the impact of store closures.

During the third quarter, the Company opened one new fuel center and closed one store upon lease expiration, ending the quarter with 159 Company-owned retail stores, 79 pharmacies, and 30 fuel centers.

Military Segment

Net sales for the Company’s military segment increased to $506.6 million from $506.0 million in the prior year quarter. The increase was due to new business gains associated with the distribution of fresh products, partially offset by continued lower sales at the Defense Commissary Agency (DeCA) operated commissaries.

Reported operating earnings for the military segment were $2.9 million compared to $3.4 million in the prior year quarter. Third quarter adjusted operating earnings were $2.9 million compared to $4.5 million in the prior year period. In the prior year third quarter, adjusted operating earnings exclude $1.1 million of pre-tax restructuring and asset impairment charges primarily related to a facility closure. The decrease was primarily due to the lack of inflationary gains and a shift in the business mix.

Balance Sheet and Cash Flow

Cash flow provided by operating activities for the year-to-date period was $78.6 million, compared to $129.9 million in the comparable period last year, primarily due to customer advances to support sales growth and the timing of working capital requirements.

Long-term debt and capital lease obligations, including current maturities, were $494.4 million at October 8, 2016 compared to $486.8 million at January 2, 2016. Net long-term debt (including current maturities and capital lease obligations and subtracting cash) for the Company was $468.0 million as of October 8, 2016 compared to $464.1 million at January 2, 2016. The Company’s total net long-term debt-to-capital ratio is 0.4-to-1.0 and net long-term debt to Adjusted EBITDA is 2.0-to-1.0, which approximates the Company’s goal, as of October 8, 2016. Net long-term debt is a non-GAAP financial measure. Please see the financial tables at the end of this press release for a reconciliation of long-term debt and capital lease obligations to total net long-term debt and capital lease obligations.

Outlook

Mr. Eidson continued, “While we anticipate continued deflationary pressure for the remainder of the year, we are confident that we will continue to improve our top line performance as we deliver value to our food distribution and retail customers through our solutions-focused approach and commitment to exceeding our customers’ expectations. We expect our targeted capital investments and enhancements to our merchandising, pricing and promotional strategies will offset some of the deflationary and competitive pressures in the retail segment. In our food distribution and military network, we continue to allocate resources to drive new business development, which will better enable us to pursue opportunities within the alternative channel space.”

The Company is narrowing its previously issued fiscal 2016 guidance of adjusted earnings per diluted share from continuing operations to approximately $2.09 to $2.16, excluding merger integration costs and other adjusted charges and gains, compared to $1.98 in the prior year. The Company anticipates that reported earnings from continuing operations will now be in the range of approximately $1.58 to $1.65 per diluted share, compared to $1.67 in the prior year. The guidance reflects the continuation of negative comparable retail store sales and the variability associated with deflation and its related positive impact on LIFO.

The Company expects capital expenditures for fiscal year 2016 to now approximate $72.0 million, with depreciation and amortization of approximately $76.0 million to $77.0 million, and total interest expense of approximately $18.0 to $19.0 million.

Recent Developments

On November 3, 2016, the Company entered into a definitive agreement to acquire certain assets of Caito Foods Service (“Caito”) and Blue Ribbon Transport (“BRT”) for $217.5 million in cash, in addition to reimbursing Caito for certain transaction costs and providing two earn-out opportunities that have the potential to pay the sellers an additional $12.4 million collectively if the business achieves certain performance targets. The purchase price will be funded with proceeds from the Company’s asset-based lending facility.

Founded in Indianapolis in 1965, Caito Foods Service is a leading supplier of fresh fruit and vegetables to grocery retailers and food service distributors across 22 states in the Southeast, Midwest and Eastern United States. Caito and BRT, which generate combined annual revenues in excess of $600 million, currently service customers from facilities in Indiana, Ohio and Florida. Caito also has a central fresh cut fruit and vegetable facility in Indianapolis and is completing construction on its new 118,000 square foot Fresh Kitchen facility, also in Indianapolis. The $32 million Fresh Kitchen will process, cook, and package fresh protein-based foods and complete meals; it is expected to be fully operational in the first quarter of 2017. The company offers temperature-controlled distribution and logistics services throughout North America through its affiliate Blue Ribbon Transport.

The acquisition will strengthen the Company’s product offerings to its existing customer base by expanding into the fast-growing freshly-prepared centerplate and side dish categories. The Company expects to close the acquisition by early January 2017, subject to regulatory approval and customary closing conditions.

Conference Call

A telephone conference call to discuss the Company’s third quarter of fiscal 2016 financial results is scheduled for 9:00 a.m. Eastern Time, Thursday, November 10, 2016. A live webcast of this conference call will be available on the Company’s website, www.spartannash.com/webcasts. Simply click on “For Investors” and follow the links to the live webcast. The webcast will remain available for replay on the Company’s website for approximately ten days.

About SpartanNash

SpartanNash (Nasdaq: SPTN) is a Fortune 400 company whose core businesses include distributing grocery products to independent grocery retailers, national accounts, its corporate owned retail stores, and U.S. military commissaries. SpartanNash serves customer locations in 47 states and the District of Columbia, Europe, Cuba, Puerto Rico, Bahrain and Egypt. SpartanNash currently operates 159 supermarkets, primarily under the banners of Family Fare Supermarkets, Family Fresh Market, D&W Fresh Market and Sun Mart. Through its MDV military division, SpartanNash is the leading distributor of grocery products to military commissaries in the United States.

Forward-Looking Statements

This press release contains “forward-looking” statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934. These include statements preceded by, followed by or that otherwise include the words “outlook,” “pipeline,” “optimistic,” “committed,” “anticipates,” “continue,” “expects,” “look forward,” “guidance,” “opportunities,” “position,” “focus,” or “plan” or similar expressions or that an event or trend “will” occur, or is “beginning.” Forward-looking statements relating to expectations about future results or events are based upon information available to SpartanNash as of today’s date, and are not guarantees of the future performance of the company, and actual results may vary materially from the results and expectations discussed. Additional risks and uncertainties include, but are not limited to, the company’s ability to compete in the highly competitive grocery distribution, retail grocery, and military distribution industries. Additional information concerning these and other risks is contained in SpartanNash’s most recently filed Annual Report on Form 10-K, recent Current Reports on Form 8-K and other SEC filings. All subsequent written and oral forward-looking statements concerning SpartanNash, or other matters and attributable to SpartanNash or any person acting on its behalf are expressly qualified in their entirety by the cautionary statements above. SpartanNash does not undertake any obligation to publicly update any of these forward-looking statements to reflect events or circumstances that may arise after the date hereof.

Investor Contact:
Chris Meyers
Executive Vice President & CFO
(616) 878-8023

Media Contact:
Meredith Gremel
Vice President Corporate Affairs and Communications
(616) 878-2830

Source: SpartanNash Company

SUPERVALU 1Q-FY2017: $5.20 billion consolidated net sales; net earnings from continuing operations at $47 million

MINNEAPOLIS, 2016-Jul-28 — /EPR Retail News/ — SUPERVALU INC. (NYSE: SVU) today reported first quarter fiscal 2017 consolidated net sales of $5.20 billion and net earnings from continuing operations of $47 million, or $0.17 per diluted share, which included $6 million in net after-tax charges and costs related to a debt refinancing and debt prepayment, the potential separation of Save-A-Lot, and a sales and use tax refund. When adjusted for these items, first quarter fiscal 2017 net earnings from continuing operations were $53 million, or $0.19 per diluted share.

Net earnings from continuing operations for last year’s first quarter were $63 million, or $0.23 per diluted share, which included$2 million in after-tax costs related to the potential separation of Save-A-Lot. When adjusted for this item, first quarter fiscal 2016 net earnings from continuing operations were $65 million, or $0.23 per diluted share. [See tables 1-4 for a reconciliation of GAAP and non-GAAP (adjusted) results appearing in this release.]

“We’re making great progress in growing our business as evidenced by our recent business announcements regarding our agreement with Marsh Supermarkets and our agreement to acquire 22 Food Lion grocery stores,” said President and CEO Mark Gross. “We’re also seeing great success in growing our wholesale produce business, and I believe we’ll sell more produce to our wholesale customers this fiscal year than our wholesale business has sold before.”

“It takes time to bring on new business and our first quarter results reflect the sales run rate we experienced coming out of last year’s fourth quarter,” continued Gross. “We’ve been replacing lost business, and I am confident in our ability to attract new customers and grow our business.”

First Quarter Results – Continuing Operations
First quarter net sales were $5.20 billion compared to $5.41 billion last year, a decrease of $211 million or 3.9 percent. Total net sales within the Wholesale segment decreased 7.6 percent. Retail identical store sales were negative 4.5 percent. Save-A-Lot network identical store sales were negative 1.4 percent. Identical store sales for corporate stores within the Save-A-Lot network were negative 1.0 percent. Fees earned under transition services agreements (“TSAs”) in the first quarter were $58 million compared to $64 million last year.

Gross profit for the first quarter was $779 million, or 15.0 percent of net sales. Last year’s first quarter gross profit was $810 million, or 15.0 percent of net sales. The gross profit rate is flat to last year and includes the impact of lower product margin rates from investments to lower prices to customers, including higher promotional activities, offset by a favorable business segment sales mix from new corporate Save-A-Lot stores.

Selling and administrative expenses in the first quarter were $646 million and included net costs of $1 million, comprised of costs related to the potential separation of Save-A-Lot, offset by a sales and use tax refund. When adjusted for these items, selling and administrative expenses were $645 million, or 12.4 percent of net sales. Selling and administrative expenses in last year’s first quarter were $652 million and included $3 million of costs related to the potential separation of Save-A-Lot. When adjusted for this item, first quarter fiscal 2016 selling and administrative expenses were $649 million, or 12.0 percent of net sales. The increase in the selling and administrative expense rate when compared to last year is primarily due to the deleveraging impact of lower sales and new corporate Save-A-Lot stores.

Net interest expense for the first quarter was $60 million and included $7 million of debt refinancing and debt prepayment charges and costs. When adjusted for these charges and costs, net interest expense was $53 million. Last year’s first quarter interest expense was $59 million. The decrease in interest expense was driven by lower average debt balances.

Income tax expense was $27 million, or 36.6 percent of pre-tax earnings, for the first quarter, compared to an income tax expense of $38 million, or 36.9 percent of pre-tax earnings in last year’s first quarter.

Wholesale
First quarter Wholesale net sales were $2.28 billion, compared to $2.46 billion last year, a decrease of 7.6 percent. The net sales decrease is primarily due to lost stores and lower sales to existing customers, partially offset by increased sales to new stores operated by existing customers and new customers.

Wholesale operating earnings in the first quarter were $64 million, or 2.8 percent of net sales. Last year’s Wholesale operating earnings in the first quarter were $77 million, or 3.1 percent of net sales. The decrease in Wholesale operating earnings was driven by lower sales and higher employee-related costs.

Save-A-Lot
First quarter Save-A-Lot net sales were $1.43 billion, compared to $1.41 billion last year, an increase of 1.7 percent. The net sales increase reflects new corporate and licensed stores, partially offset by network identical store sales of negative 1.4 percent.

Save-A-Lot operating earnings in the first quarter were $39 million, or 2.7 percent of net sales. Last year’s Save-A-Lot operating earnings in the first quarter were $51 million, or 3.6 percent of net sales. The decrease in Save-A-Lot operating earnings was driven by higher employee-related costs from new corporate stores, higher occupancy costs and higher depreciation expense driven by new corporate stores, and higher shrink.

Retail
First quarter Retail net sales were $1.43 billion, compared to $1.47 billion last year, a decrease of 2.9 percent. The net sales decrease reflects identical store sales of negative 4.5 percent, partially offset by sales from new stores.

Retail operating earnings in the first quarter were $8 million, or 0.6 percent of net sales. Last year’s Retail operating earnings were$33 million, or 2.2 percent of net sales. The decrease in Retail operating earnings was driven by lower sales and lower product margin rates from investments to lower prices to customers, including higher promotional activities.

Corporate
First quarter fees earned under the TSAs were $58 million compared to $64 million last year.

Net Corporate operating earnings in the first quarter were $22 million and included $3 million of costs related to the potential separation of Save-A-Lot and a $2 million sales and use tax refund. When adjusted for these items, net Corporate operating earnings were $23 million. Last year’s first quarter net Corporate operating loss was $3 million and included $3 million of costs related to the potential separation of Save-A-Lot. When adjusted for this item, last year’s net Corporate operating earnings were $0. The improvement in net Corporate operating earnings was primarily driven by lower pension expense and lower employee-related costs.

Cash Flows – Continuing Operations
First quarter net cash flows provided by operating activities of continuing operations were $121 million compared to $111 million last year, reflecting lower benefit plan contributions. First quarter net cash flows used in investing activities of continuing operations were $61 million compared to $70 million last year. First quarter net cash flows used in financing activities of continuing operations were $58 million compared to $19 million last year, reflecting higher payments on debt obligations.

Conference Call ­­­
A conference call to review the first quarter results is scheduled for 9:00 a.m. central time today. The call will be webcast live at www.supervaluinvestors.com (click on microphone icon). A replay of the call will be archived at www.supervaluinvestors.com. To access the website replay go to the “Investors” link and click on “Presentations and Webcasts.”

About SUPERVALU INC.
SUPERVALU INC. is one of the largest grocery wholesalers and retailers in the U.S. with annual sales of approximately $18 billion. SUPERVALU serves customers across the United States through a network of 3,342 stores composed of 1,773 stores operated by wholesale customers serviced primarily by the Company’s food distribution business; 1,368 Save-A-Lot stores, of which 896 are operated by licensee owners; and 201 traditional retail grocery stores (store counts as of June 18, 2016). Headquartered in Minnesota, SUPERVALU has approximately 40,000 employees. For more information about SUPERVALU visit www.supervalu.com.

CAUTIONARY STATEMENTS RELEVANT TO FORWARD-LOOKING INFORMATION FOR THE PURPOSE OF “SAFE HARBOR” PROVISIONS OF THE PRIVATE SECURITIES LITIGATION REFORM ACT OF 1995.

Except for the historical and factual information contained herein, the matters set forth in this news release, particularly those pertaining to SUPERVALU’s expectations, guidance, or future operating results, and other statements identified by words such as “estimates,” “expects,” “projects,” “plans,” “intends,” and similar expressions are forward-looking statements within the meaning of the “safe harbor” provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. These forward-looking statements are subject to risks and uncertainties that may cause actual results to differ materially, including competition, ability to execute operations and initiatives, ability to realize benefits from acquisitions and dispositions, impact of exploration of possible separation of Save-A-Lot, reliance on wholesale customers and licensees ability to grow or maintain identical store sales, ability to maintain or increase margins, substantial indebtedness, labor relations issues, escalating costs of providing employee benefits, relationships with Albertson’s LLC, New Albertson’s Inc., and Haggen, intrusions to and disruption of information technology systems, impact of economic conditions, commodity pricing, governmental regulation, food and drug safety issues, legal proceedings, pharmacy reimbursement and health care financing, intellectual property protection, severe weather, natural disasters and adverse climate changes, disruption to supply chain and distribution network, changes in military business, adequacy of insurance, volatility in fuel and energy costs, asset impairment charges, fluctuations in our common stock price and other risk factors relating to our business or industry as detailed from time to time in SUPERVALU’s reports filed with the SEC. You should not place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements, which speak only as of the date of this news release. Unless legally required, SUPERVALU undertakes no obligation to update or revise publicly any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.

Investor Contact:
Steve Bloomquist
952-828-4144
steve.j.bloomquist@supervalu.com

Media Contact:
Jeff Swanson
952-903-1645
jeffrey.s.swanson@supervalu.com

Source: SUPERVALU INC.