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Natural Grocers posts Q1 sales, earnings gains

Natural Grocers posts Q1 sales, earnings gains

Increased consumer demand for healthy foods helped to drive quarterly sales sales and earnings gains for Natural Grocers by Vitamin Cottage, the Lakewood, Colo.-based retailer said Thursday.

Sales increased 21% to $145.9 million in the first quarter, which ended Dec. 31. Net earnings improved 22% to $3.6 million. Sales and earnings figures were slightly ahead of average analyst estimates.

Sales improved as a result of new units and by a 6.2% increase in comparable store sales, the company said. Comps were driven by a 3.4% increase in daily average transaction count and a 2.7% increase in average transaction size. Mature stores saw daily average daily increases of 2.8%. 

"We are pleased with this positive start to fiscal 2015 as we prepare to celebrate our 60th anniversary of empowering health. We believe our pioneering and unrelenting commitment to healthy, organic, natural and minimally processed foods and dietary supplements positions us at the forefront of an accelerating consumer movement that is creating demand for products with higher standards," Kemper Isely, co-president, said in a statement. “As expected, we saw encouraging improvements in our sales trends during the first quarter of fiscal 2015. We continue to remain focused on our directed sales initiatives, outstanding customer service and operational excellence."

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