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BRADLEES, INC. REPORTS INCREASED SALES AND EARNINGS FOR FISCAL 1992 AND SALE OF $100 MILLION OF 9-1/4 PERCENT SENIOR SUBORDINATED NOTES

 BRAINTREE, Mass., March 15 /PRNewswire/ -- Bradlees, Inc. (NYSE: BLE) today reported increased sales and earnings for fiscal 1992.
 Sales for the 52 weeks ended Jan. 30, 1993 were $1.83 billion compared with $1.77 billion in fiscal 1991, a 3.4 percent increase. Sales in comparable stores increased 4.7 percent.
 Sales for the periods from July 10, 1992 (the company's commencement of operations) through Jan. 30, 1993 were $1.16 billion. Net earnings for this period were $32.2 million or $2.87 per share.
 The fiscal 1991 results for the Bradlees Business and results for the period up to the acquisition of the Bradlees Business by Bradlees, Inc., on July 9, 1992, have been presented on a pro forma basis to facilitate comparison. The pro forma presentation assumes that the transactions associated with the acquisition occurred on Feb. 3, 1991 (the beginning of fiscal 1991) and continued through the 23 weeks ended July 9, 1992.
 For fiscal 1992, pro forma net earnings were $25.3 million or $2.25 per share compared with fiscal 1991's pro forma net earnings of $19.1 million or $1.71 per share. As a result of the acquisition, fiscal 1992 pro forma results do not include a post-acquisition LIFO charge. Had the fiscal 1992 included a LIFO charge similar to fiscal 1991, pro forma net earnings would have been $24.3 million or $2.16 per share.
 For the 12 weeks ended Jan. 30, 1993, sales were $586.4 million compared with $553.0 million for the fourth quarter of fiscal 1991. Comparable store sales were up 7.4 percent.
 Operating profit for the fourth quarter was $60.5 million compared with $53.0 million on a pro forma basis for the fourth quarter of fiscal 1991. Net earnings were $30.8 million or $2.74 per share in the fourth quarter of fiscal 1992 compared with $26.7 million or $2.38 per share for the comparable period in fiscal 1991, on a pro forma basis. The fiscal 1992 fourth quarter results do not include a LIFO inventory charge. Had the fiscal 1992 results included a LIFO charge similar to the fiscal 1991 provision, operating profit would have been $59.9 million and net earnings would have been $30.4 million or $2.71 per share.
 The company also announced today that it has sold $100 million of 9- 1/4 percent Senior Subordinated Notes due 2003 in a private placement. The net proceeds of this offering were used to repay the $86.3 million term loan outstanding under the company's original bank credit agreement, with the remainder to be used for remodeling existing stores, opening new stores and general corporate purposes. Pursuant to the terms of the private placement, the company intends to register with the Securities and Exchange Commission essentially identical notes and offer to exchange them for the privately-placed notes.
 In conjunction with the private placement, the company entered into a new $150 million working capital revolving line of credit agreement. The new bank agreement, led by Bankers Trust Company, expires on July 31, 1996 and replaces, at lower rates, the company's previous $150 million working capital agreement.
 As a result of the company's refinancing, there will be a one-time noncash extraordinary charge, net of income tax benefit, in the first quarter of $5.2 million or 46 cents per share associated with the write- off of deferred debt expense.
 In 1992, Bradlees remodeled 25 stores and opened a new prototype in Taunton, Mass. Also, during the fourth quarter, the company acquired a store in Yonkers, N.Y. which will be renovated and opened in the Spring of 1993. This is the first store in the company's planned entry into the densely populated Westchester County and Long Island portion of the New York City Metropolitan area. This year, Bradlees expects to remodel 14 stores, reset the softlines presentation in 14 previously-remodeled stores, open three (one new and two replacements) and close two smaller stores. In addition, Bradlees is aggressively pursuing new sites for 1994 and beyond.
 "The strong Christmas selling season and our continued emphasis on controlling our costs have resulted in a successful fourth quarter and year," said Barry A. Berman, chairman and chief executive officer. "We are working hard towards continued improvements in fiscal 1993."
 Bradlees, Inc. operates 127 discount department stores in Maine, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Connecticut, New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania and Virginia. Bradlees' common stock is listed and traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol "BLE."
 BRADLEES, INC. AND SUBSIDIARIES
 Condensed Consolidated Statements of Operations
 (In Thousands Except Per Share Amounts)
 (Unaudited)
 12 Weeks Ended 52 Weeks Ended
 1/30/93 2/1/92 1/30/93 2/1/92
 Actual Pro Forma Pro Forma Pro Forma
 (a) (a)
 Retail sales $586,357 $553,003 $1,830,955 $1,771,572
 Costs And Expenses:
 Cost of goods sold,
 buying and
 warehousing
 costs(a) 401,087 380,391 1,264,137 1,221,945
 Selling, store
 operating &
 admin. costs 115,872 110,533 448,643 445,023
 Depreciation &
 amortization 8,885 9,122 43,242 39,529
 Operating profit 60,513 52,957 74,933 65,075
 Interest expense, net 6,508 6,121 30,576 31,501
 Earnings before
 income taxes 54,005 46,836 44,357 33,574
 Income taxes 23,241 20,140 19,092 14,437
 Net earnings 30,764 26,696 25,265 19,137
 Net earnings
 per share $2.74 $2.38 $2.25 $1.71
 Weighted avg. number
 of shares 11,238 11,220 11,219 11,220
 (a) Actual 1992 fourth quarter results do not include a LIFO inventory charge. The 1991 fourth quarter pro forma results include a $0.6 million charge. Had 1992 included a similar LIFO provision, results would have been as follows:
 12 Weeks 52 Weeks
 Operating profit $59,917 $73,204
 Net earnings 30,433 24,288
 Net earnings per share $2.71 $2.16
 -0- 3/15/93
 /CONTACT: Aileen Gorman of Bradlees, 617-380-8370/
 (BLE)


CO: Bradlees, Inc. ST: Massachusetts IN: REA SU: ERN

CH -- NE004 -- 5879 03/15/93 08:48 EST
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Date:Mar 15, 1993
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