MINNEAPOLIS — Nash Finch Co. here saw its stock drop more than 12% yesterday after reporting a decline in fourth-quarter profits. The wholesaler said net income for the period, which ended Jan. 3, was $6.2 million, down 27% from year-ago levels.
Sales for the 13-week quarter were $1.2 billion, an increase of 12.5% over the 12-week quarter a year ago. Excluding the extra week, sales rose 5.3%. Net income for the year was off 6.7%, to $36.2 million, which the company said was negatively impacted by several items totaling $6.1 million, after taxes.
Sales for the 53-week year were $4.7 billion, up 3.8% over the 52-week year in 2007. Excluding the extra week’s sales of $77.1 million and the impact of $72.8 million in sales lost to a large customer that left in mid-2007, sales rose 3.7%.
The company said EBITDA increased in 2008 in each of its three operating segments — up 7.3% in distribution, 13.9% in retail and 16.2% in military supply.
“It is clear that changes in consumer behavior, as well as deflation within certain key commodities, will create a challenging business environment for us,” said Alec Covington, president and chief executive officer.
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