LOS ANGELES — Unified Grocers here said Wednesday its financial outlook is "very positive," despite posting a loss in the third quarter.
The loss for the 13-week quarter, which ended June 29, amounted to $11.3 million, compared with earnings of $1.2 million during last year's third quarter. Excluding patronage dividends and income taxes, the loss was $14.6 million, compared with earnings of $6.2 million a year ago.
Sales for the quarter fell 0.5% to $939.2 million.
Unified said several items contributed to the loss, including a charge of $9.8 million related to the previously announced early extinguishment of senior secured notes as part of a refinancing of the company's debt, which is designed to provide greater flexibility in day-to-day operations and lower ongoing borrowing costs. Unified also said it enhanced workers' compensation reserves by $5.5 million to address increased claims exposure at its insurance subsidiary, and incurred $2 million in additional lease reserves and equipment disposal costs.
For the 39-week period the loss was $5.9 million, compared with net income of $3.3 million a year ago, while sales fell 2.8% to $2.8 billion.
According to Bob Ling, president and chief executive officer, "We are a company in transition. The debt refinancing in the third quarter positions the company for growth in fiscal year 2014 and beyond. We are financially sound, we have a solid foundation on which to build and we have a dynamic leadership team in place. We're seeing improving sales trends and continue to execute on a number of initiatives to achieve our long-term strategy to improve sales and profits. The outlook is very positive."
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