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AWG 2011 Sales Up 7.2%

KANSAS CITY, Kan. — Associated Wholesale Grocers here said it had record net sales of $7.8 billion for the year that ended Dec. 31 — a jump of 7.2% over the $7.5 billion reported a year ago.

Patronage distributed also set a record of $163.8 million, or 2.71% of qualifying warehouse sales, also a record for the cooperative, the company noted. Including allowances, AWG said it rebated $482 million in 2011.

Total gross profit on sales was 6.16% before the payout of 2.71%, a drop of 16 basis points from the prior year. AWG also announced the trading value of its stock rose 4.1% during the year to $1,635 per share.

The company said its private brands, Best Choice and Always Save, achieved record sales of nearly $1.1 billion.

According to Jerry Garland, president and chief executive officer, "Our consistent performance is a testament to the cooperative model where everyone has the same opportunity for success and where transparency in the numbers breeds trust." Garland said AWG is on track with its seventh distribution center, in Pearl River, La. "The Gulf Coast area has many of the country's finest family-owned supermarket operators, and we believe our company will bring a lower cost of goods to these retailers," he pointed out.

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