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HECHINGER COMPANY REPORTS MARCH SALES

 LANDOVER, Md., April 8 /PRNewswire/ -- Hechinger Company (NASDAQ-NMS: HECHA and HECHB) today reported monthly sales for March of $170.1 million, which represents a 4 percent increase from March 1992 sales of $163.8 million. Comparable store sales were down 9 percent for the month.
 Comparable store sales for March 1993 were down 6 percent for the Hechinger Stores division and down 13 percent for the Home Quarters Warehouse division.
 Sales for March 1993 were adversely impacted by the poor weather conditions throughout the month. In particular, the major snow storm during the weekend of March 13-14 affected substantially all of the company's markets. Comparable store sales for just those two days were down more than 75 percent from last year's level for the same weekend. In some markets, stores did not open for business either one or both days. Record rainfall and cooler than normal temperatures during the remainder of the month also had a negative affect on sales. However, comparable store sales improved significantly during the last week of the month.
 John Hechinger Jr., president and chief executive officer, stated, "The poor weather conditions in February and March have led to weaker than anticipated sales. As a result, we expect that our first quarter results will be lower than analysts' expectations."
 In late March, the Home Quarters Warehouse division celebrated the grand opening of a new store in Richmond, Va. Home Quarters experienced record breaking sales during the grand opening weekend. In addition, the company announced plans for a second Home Quarters Warehouse store to be located in the Little Rock, Ark., market. The store is scheduled to open in early 1994.
 On April 3, the Hechinger Stores division celebrated the grand openings of the newly converted Burke, Va., and Deptford, N.J. Home Project Centers. Customer response to these newly converted Home Project Centers was very positive. The company now has 19 Hechinger Home Project Centers in operation.
 In other news, the company announced that for personal reasons, Allan J. Bloostein resigned from the board of directors effective March 22, 1993. Hechinger, said, "We thank Allan for all his efforts. He has been a great asset to our board of directors and we appreciate his many contributions." The company has no current plans to fill the vacancy.
 Hechinger Company is a leading specialty retailer, currently operating 122 home centers in 18 states and the District of Columbia. The company serves the growing home improvement industry through its three divisions: Hechinger Stores, Home Quarters Warehouse, and Triangle Building Centers.
 -0- 4/8/93
 /CONTACT: W. Clark McClelland, executive vice president, Hechinger, 301-341-0450/
 (HECH)


CO: Hechinger Company ST: Maryland IN: REA SU: PER

KD-DC -- DC009 -- 4151 04/08/93 10:30 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Apr 8, 1993
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