Sears Hometown and Outlet Net Falls in Q1
June 6, 2014,
HOFFMAN ESTATES, Ill.-Lagging sales, especially for comparable stores, led to a 75.5 percent dropoff in first-quarter net income for Sears Hometown and Outlet Stores, to $3.7 million.
Net sales in the quarter, which ended on May 3, were down 1.9 percent to $589.9 million. Same-store sales for the company as a whole fell 6.2 percent, which included a 7.5 percent decline in Sears Hometown same-store sales and a 2.6 percent drop for the Outlet portion.
Bruce Johnson, president and CEO of Sears Hometown and Outlet, cited the weather as a key factor in the poor sales performance. Johnson noted that February, which brought very cold weather, affected overall store traffic and sales. Then the unseasonably cold spring hurt sales, especially in lawn and garden products, during March and April, he said.
Johnson said the factors that affected the first-quarter performance--the weather, in particular--should diminish as the year moves along. "We have modified our pricing and promotional plans for the second quarter, and possibly for succeeding quarters, including the addition of free-delivery options in most trade areas," he said. "We expect these changes will improve our pricing and promotional effectiveness."