BJ’s Wholesale Club launched a new credit card back in February, and during the first quarter shoppers have been swiping at the warehouse stores at a historical rate. They’ve also been using other methods of payment.
The purchasing has never been higher during the opening quarter of the year, as BJ’s Wholesale Club announced first quarter records in net income and adjusted EBITDA. The retailer’s net income was just over $116 million (it was just over $112 million in Q1 2022) and the adjusted EBITDA stood at just under $256 million (vs. just under $221 million in 2022).
“We reported a record first quarter in net income and adjusted EBITDA, demonstrating the power of our business model and the warehouse club channel,” said Bob Eddy, president and chief executive officer, BJ’s Wholesale Club. “We drove topline growth bolstered by robust traffic and share gains. We also made significant improvements on our merchandise margins largely due to waning supply chain pressures and moderating inflation. We remain focused on our strategic priorities and believe that we are well-positioned to maximize long-term shareholder value.”
In regards to the new credit card program with Capital One and Mastercard, which was activated on Feb. 27, BJ’s Wholesale Club, based in Marlborough, Mass., believes the program will provide a “first-class rewards and customer service experience.”
Every financial category of Q1 2023 beat out its predecessor — Q1 2022. Gross profit was lifted to $880 million (vs. $790.6 million in 2022), total comparable club sales increased 2% over Q1 2022, and income from continuing operations before income taxes was $172.1 million during the opening months of 2023 compared to last year’s $142.5 million. Additionally, digitally enabled comparable sales growth was 19% year-over-year, membership fee income went up 6.1% year-over-year, and the merchandise gross margin rate 100 basis points vs. 2022.
“Our fiscal 2023 outlook on our business remains unchanged given the sustained strength in our grocery business and our gains in market share,” said Laura Felice, executive vice president, chief financial officer, BJ's Wholesale Club. “We are confident that the strength of our core business and our intense focus on delivering value will continue to drive long-term growth.”
BJ’s Wholesale Club also celebrated a technology milestone earlier in the year when it announced it would be using AI-powered robots at all 237 locations. BJ’s said that incorporating the bots, named “Tally”, into chainwide operations will provide greater visibility into club conditions and deeper business insights, with the ultimate goals of improving operational efficiencies and enhancing the shopper experience.