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GIANT FOOD ANNOUNCES 1992 FISCAL YEAR SALES AND EARNINGS

 GIANT FOOD ANNOUNCES 1992 FISCAL YEAR SALES AND EARNINGS
 WASHINGTON, March 31 /PRNewswire/ -- Giant Food Inc. (AMEX: GFS.A), a Washington-based food-drug chain of 154 units, today announced sales and earnings for the 17-week and 53-week periods ended Feb. 29, 1992, compared with the 16-week and 52-week periods ended Feb. 23, 1991.
 For the 53 Weeks Ended Feb. 29, 1992:
 -- Sales were $3,489,762,000, compared with $3,349,546,000, an increase of 4.2 percent.
 -- Net income was $87,180,000; 2.50 percent of sales, compared with $118,891,000, 3.55 percent of sales.
 -- Earnings per share were $1.47 compared with $2.01, a decline of 27 percent.
 -- Effective Tax Rate: current year 38.6 percent; last year 38.1 percent.
 For the 17 Weeks Ended Feb. 29, 1992:
 -- Sales were $1,151,651,000, compared with $1,058,694,000, an increase of 8.8 percent.
 -- Net income was $24,659,000; 2.14 percent of sales, compared with $39,725,000, 3.75 percent.
 -- Earnings per share were 42 cents, compared with 68 cents, a decline of 38 percent.
 -- Effective Tax Rate: current fiscal period 39 percent; prior year fiscal period 37.3 percent.
 The company estimates that the extra week increased earnings per share by 4 cents for the current reporting quarter and for the 53-week fiscal year.
 The story of Giant's 1992 fiscal year was, in a word, recession. The impact of the recession on the Washington and Baltimore communities held sales gains to a modest 4.2 percent on a 53-week basis and 2.2 percent on a 52-week comparison. Although in a different economic climate such increases would not be cause for celebration, Giant views its 1992 sales performance as an achievement.
 The recession also created a climate in which Giant sought -- and achieved -- improved sales in its 108 drug stores through the reduction of the everyday price on thousands of health and beauty care items and general merchandise categories. The company expanded its successful Superdeals program and introduced double coupons into the Washington market in the summer of 1991. While all of these efforts did protect and build volume and customer traffic, they also contributed to lower gross margins and net earnings. The recession also affected earnings in that the Federal Reserve's lower interest rate policy meant that Giant earned pre-tax $6 million less interest on its cash investments, a 45 percent decline from the prior year.
 The LIFO charge for the current year was $5.5 million vs. $3.0 million for the prior year; the LIFO charge was $1.0 million for the final 17 weeks vs. a $1.5 million credit for the prior year's 16-week period.
 The recession held down new store growth because of either the difficulties faced directly by many commercial real estate developers, or the slowdown of residential development upon which new shopping centers depend. However, the recession did present Giant with the opportunity to acquire three very attractive shopping centers plus land property for future development.
 Throughout the year, cost containment, expense reduction, and increased operational efficiency were sought aggressively and will continue to be important elements of Giant's non-merchandising efforts.
 Transfer sales to support its retail operations by the company's manufacturing, processing, wholesaling and distribution activities were about $486 million. Of the 2.5 percent after tax net income for the current year, nearly 1 percent was derived from these operations, which is consistent with results for the prior year.
 Giant opened three new food-drug stores and one free-standing deep discount drug store during the 1992 fiscal year, including the company's first entries into Carroll and Calvert counties. Also, during the year, the company closed a store in Dale City, Va. On March 4, 1993, a 62,300 square foot store in the Greenbriar Shopping Center in Chantilly, Va., was opened, replacing a nearby smaller unit.
 During the 1993 fiscal year, Giant plans to build four new food- drug stores, two of which should open during the fiscal year. Giant will also add a drug store to its Springfield Plaza, Va., food store.
 The new stores will be a 58,000-square-foot food-drug store in the Village of Hickory Ridge, Columbia, Md. (June); a 49,000-square- foot food-drug store replacing a food store in Lanham, Md. (December); a 61,000-square-foot food-drug store in Upper Marlboro, Md. (spring 1993); and Giant's largest Maryland store, a 68,000- square-foot food-drug store which will replace an existing food-drug store in Greenbelt, Md. (summer 1993).
 During the 1992 fiscal year, the company acquired three shopping centers in which it operates retail stores. The centers are managed by the company's GFS Realty subsidiary, bringing the GFS portfolio of centers it manages to 25, of which 14 are owned by GFS. The centers acquired in the 1992 fiscal year are the 39-acre Flagship Center in Rockville, Md., with 355,000 square feet of retail space (September); the Friendship Shopping Center along Wisconsin Avenue at Newark Street in Washington, with 112,000 square feet of retail space (November); and the McLean Shopping Center with 115,000 square feet of retail space (April). The company also acquired 30 acres for future retail development in Manassas, Va. The new Giant in Upper Marlboro will be in a 68,000-square-foot shopping center developed and managed by GFS.
 Giant's Apples for the Students program concluded its third year on Feb. 29. Over 2,700 schools participated, earning Apple and IBM computer equipment and software, along with audio-visual, athletic and other educational equipment and materials. Giant anticipates that after all orders are processed, it will award over $6.5 million worth of equipment, including over 12,000 computers, printers, disk drives and software packages to area schools, for a three-year total of $20 million. Giant is proud of its efforts to aid education, particularly at a time in which educational budgets are being drastically reduced.
 At the close of the fiscal year, Giant operated 154 supermarkets, 105 of which are food-drug stores, plus three freestanding drug stores. This compares with 152 supermarkets, 102 food-drug stores and two freestanding drug stores in the prior year.
 -0- 3/31/92
 /CONTACT: David B. Sykes of Giant Food, 301-341-8480/
 (GFS) CO: Giant Food Inc. ST: District of Columbia IN: RET SU: ERN


TW-SB -- DC027 -- 3590 03/31/92 16:48 EST
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Date:Mar 31, 1992
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