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Village posts sales, earnings increase in Q3

Renovated stores, lower expenses overcome deflation, new competition

Village Super Market on Thursday reported modest gains in sales, comps and earnings in its fiscal third quarter, as lower expenses and higher sales from new and renovated stores overcame new competition and challenges of deflation.

The Springfield, N.J.-based operator of 29 ShopRite supermarkets said sales of $392 million in the quarter increased by 1.1% and comparable-store sales also increased by 1.1% in the quarter, which ended April 29. Three competitor store closings, sales growth in recently remodeled and expanded stores in Stirling and Chester, N.J., and lower sales in the first week of the third quarter last year due to effects of Winter Storm Jonas helped to increase comps. Those gains were offset partially by four competitor store openings and deflation, particularly in meat, produce and dairy.

Excluding the negative impact of weather, same store sales increased by 0.4%. The company said it expects same-store sales to fall between flat and 1% for the fiscal year.

Net income of $6 million increased by 2.3% due primarily to higher gross profit percentage, lower operating expenses and last year’s weather-related sales disruption. Excluding one-time items in both quarters, net income increased by 4%.

Through the first nine months of the fiscal year, Village said adjusted net income was down by 2% to $16.1 million primarily due to a 0.3% decline in same-store sales year-to-date.

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