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FABRI-CENTERS ANNOUNCES FOURTH QUARTER AND FISCAL 1993 RESULTS; COMPANY TO FOCUS ON CORE BUSINESS

 CLEVELAND, March 8 /PRNewswire/ -- Fabri-Centers of America, Inc. (NYSE: FCA) today announced sales, net income and earnings per share for the fiscal year and fourth quarter that ended Jan. 30, 1993. Financial results have been restated to reflect the company's decision to divest the operations of its Cargo Express housewares subsidiary.
 Net sales from continuing operations increased 30 percent in fiscal 1993 to a record $574,120,000 from $441,978,000. Comparable store sales from continuing operations increased 8 percent in the fiscal year.
 Income from continuing operations in fiscal 1993, excluding an extraordinary gain of $2,052,000 from the repurchase of a portion of the company's subordinated debt was $5,174,000, or $.54 per share, compared with $18,077,000, or $1.96 per share, the previous year. Annual net income was $4,232,000, including the extraordinary gain, compared with $17,513,000 in fiscal 1992. On a per-share basis, net income was $.44 in fiscal 1993 and $1.90 in fiscal 1992.
 Quarterly net sales from continuing operations were $185,579,000, up 28 percent from $145,153,000 in the same period a year ago. Comparable store sales from continuing operations increased 11 percent from the fourth quarter last year.
 Income from continuing operations for the quarter was $8,842,000, or $.93 per share, compared with $11,356,000, or $1.17 per share in the previous year. Fiscal 1993 fourth quarter net income was $7,433,000, compared with $11,957,000 in the fourth quarter a year ago. Quarterly net earnings per share were $.78 in fiscal 1993 and $1.23 in the fourth quarter of fiscal 1992.
 As expected, gross profit margins declined in both the fiscal year and the most recent quarter, due to the continued intense competitiveness in the retail fabric industry caused in part by the rapid growth in industry square footage over the past three years. Cost-cutting measures implemented early in the year offset some of the margin decline and helped overall performance in the fourth quarter.
 In fiscal 1993, the company completed an aggressive real estate plan by opening 171 superstores while closing 142 smaller units. At year end, about 70 percent of Fabri-Centers' stores were in this new superstore format, with strong representation in every major market. For fiscal 1994, the company expects to slow its superstore conversion process by opening 25 to 35 larger stores and closing 40 to 60 smaller units.
 The planned reduction in real estate activity should provide an opportunity to improve operating results in fiscal 1994 by reducing expenses such as pre-opening costs and grand opening advertising as well as to refocus efforts on the core fabric and craft business. The expected decline in new store growth throughout the industry should have a stabilizing effect on the competitive environment. Still, the company expects first quarter fiscal 1994 results to be well below the same period a year ago.
 While Cargo Express has become a recognized specialty retailer of housewares, the competitive retail fabric environment and management's decision to focus its energy on the core fabric and craft business led to the decision to sell the housewares chain. Cargo Express' net sales in fiscal 1993 were $39,690,000, compared with $26,926,000 in the prior year. The net loss in fiscal 1993 was $2,994,000, or $.31 per share, a decline from a net loss of $564,000, or $.06 per share, in fiscal 1992. The net loss for fiscal 1993 includes a $1,562,000 provision, or $.16 per share, for future losses from the housewares retailer. Cargo Express currently has 41 store locations in Michigan, Ohio and Pennsylvania.
 Fabri-Centers operates 693 stores in 37 states, which offer customers a broad assortment of fashion and decorator fabrics, crafts, notions, seasonal and other merchandise. The stores operate primarily under the name Jo-Ann Fabrics.
 Fabri-Centers of America, Inc.
 Summary of Sales and Earnings
 (Thousands of dollars, except share data)
 Fifty-two Weeks Ended
 January 30, February 1,
 1993 1992
 Net Sales $574,120 $441,978
 Earnings from continuing operations
 before income taxes and
 extraordinary item $8,279 $28,243
 Income taxes 3,105 10,166
 Earnings from continuing operations
 before extraordinary item 5,174 18,077
 Discontinued operations
 Loss from operations net of
 tax provision of ($860)
 and ($318) (1,432) (564)
 Provision for estimated operating
 losses to be incurred through
 disposal date net of tax
 provision of ($938) (1,562) --
 Total (2,994) (564)
 Earnings before extraordinary item 2,180 17,513
 Extraordinary item
 Gain on buyback of convertible
 subordinated debentures net
 of tax provision of $1,231 2,052 --
 Net earnings $4,232 $17,513
 Earnings per common share
 Earnings from continuing operations
 before extraordinary item $0.54 $1.96
 Discontinued operations (0.31) (0.06)
 Earnings before extraordinary item 0.23 1.90
 Extraordinary item 0.21 --
 Net earnings $0.44 $1.90
 Average shares and equivalents
 outstanding 9,631,537 9,198,792
 Thirteen Weeks Ended
 January 30, February 1,
 1993 1992
 Net Sales $185,579 $145,153
 Earnings from continuing operations
 before income taxes $14,148 $17,694
 Income taxes 5,306 6,338
 Earnings from continuing operations 8,842 11,356
 Discontinued operations
 Earnings from operations
 net of tax provision of $91
 and $346 153 601
 Provision for estimated operating
 losses to be incurred through
 disposal date net of tax
 provision of ($938) (1,562) --
 Total (1,409) 601
 Net earnings $7,433 $11,957
 Earnings per common share
 Earnings from continuing
 operations $0.93 $1.17
 Discontinued operations (0.15) 0.06
 Net earnings $0.78 $1.23
 Average shares and equivalents
 outstanding 9,471,762 9,697,405
 -0- 3/8/93
 /CONTACT: Robert Norton or Alan Rosskamm, 216-464-2500, both of Fabri-Centers of America, Inc./
 (FCA)


CO: Fabri-Centers of America, Inc. ST: Ohio IN: REA SU: ERN

BM -- CL007 -- 3955 03/08/93 11:18 EST
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Date:Mar 8, 1993
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