STATER BROS. POSTS RECORD SALES, OPERATING CASH FLOW

COLTON, Calif. -- Stater Bros. Holdings here said last week Stater Bros. Markets had record sales and operating cash flow for the year and fourth quarter ended Sept. 26.d for sales of $63.7 million during the last six weeks of the fourth quarter.Sales for the year rose 6% to $1.8 billion and operating cash flow rose 40% to $69.5 million; the company said acquisition integration expenses resulted in

COLTON, Calif. -- Stater Bros. Holdings here said last week Stater Bros. Markets had record sales and operating cash flow for the year and fourth quarter ended Sept. 26.

d for sales of $63.7 million during the last six weeks of the fourth quarter.

Sales for the year rose 6% to $1.8 billion and operating cash flow rose 40% to $69.5 million; the company said acquisition integration expenses resulted in a net loss of $9 million for the year.

Sales for the 13-week quarter increased 14.7% to $505.8 million and operating cash flow rose 47% to $19.6 million; the loss for the quarter was $18.3 million.

The company said same-store sales were impacted by cannibalization from some of the acquired stores, with comps for the year up 1.9% following an erosion of approximately 0.1%, and comps for the quarter up 0.3% following an erosion of approximately 0.3%.

Jack H. Brown, chairman, president and chief executive officer, said sales and operating cash flow both exceeded the company's projections.