SYRACUSE, N.Y. — Sales slowed and losses continued for Penn Traffic in fiscal 2009, but the retailer on Wednesday insisted the strategic actions it took during the year could soon pay off.
Penn Traffic closed 21 stores and turned over its warehouse and distribution business to a third party, C&S Wholesale Grocers, during the 2009 fiscal year, which ended Jan. 31.
These moves contributed to decrease in revenues but left the retailer with a stronger group of core stores, officials said in a conference call discussing results. The spin-off of the distribution business in the meantime helped Penn Traffic post a quarterly profit, while proceeds were applied toward debt reduction.
The company posted a $17.6 million loss for the fiscal year, down from a loss of $41.7 in 2008. Annual operating loss accelerated to $22.6 million on sales of $872.3 million — a 2.6% sales decrease. For the fourth quarter, Penn Traffic posted net income of $3.8 million on $210 million in sales, with the profit coming entirely out of the $18.2 million gain from the sale of its distribution business. Sales were down 2.4% among continuing stores.
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