MINNEAPOLIS — Supervalu here said Tuesday that first-quarter profits were up about 10.4%, to $74 million, despite a 3.5% decline in revenues, to $11.1 billion.
Retail same-store sales declined 3.9% in the quarter, contributing to a retail sales decline of 4.4%, to $8.6 billion. Retail food operating earnings were $219 million, down 12.7%. Retail operating earnings totaled 2.5% of sales, vs. 2.8% of sales in the year-ago period.
The wholesale side of the company saw sales decline 3.6%, to $2.5 billion, primarily reflecting the divestiture of Total Logistic Control, which occurred in the fourth quarter of the last fiscal year. Operating earnings on the wholesale side, or the "independent business" segments, as Supervalu now calls it, were down slightly, to $77 million, vs. $79 million a year ago, and up slightly as a percent of sales, to 3.1%.
"First quarter results reflect the progress we are making on our 8 Plays to Win strategy, and we remain on track to deliver our fiscal 2012 guidance," said Craig Herkert, Supervalu's president and chief executive officer. "Our dedicated associates are utilizing new planning tools, analytics and a hyper local focus to help us meet the needs of today¹s consumers, while reducing shrink and improving our operations."
When adjusted for one-time charges last year related to the exit from the Cincinnati and Connecticut markets and a labor dispute at Shaw's, year-ago net income actually was higher, about $92 million.