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Conn’s Q1 Sales Up 6.6%

The Woodlands, Texas – Conn’s reported a 6.6 percent increase in first-quarter net retail sales, to $296 million.

But the lingering inventory constraints from the West Coast port labor dispute, plus tighter underwriting for its in-house consumer credit, put a damper on same-store sales, which slipped 4.3 for the period, ended April 30.

Broken out by category, majap comps edged up 0.8 percent; CE comps dipped 2.6 percent; furniture and mattress comps declined 5.5 percent; and home office comps were down 15.5 percent.

Conn’s chairman/CEO Theo Wright said comps improved during the latter part of April as supply-chain disruption diminished and inventory became more readily available.

Indeed, CE rebounded in April, with same-store sales rising nearly 6 percent, led by a 10.1 percent increase in TV comps. Wright said the company sold a greater proportion of Ultra HD sets last month, whose higher average selling prices helped offset lower unit volume.

Delinquent customer credit payments, which have been dogging the multiregional chain, edged up from 8 percent to 8.4 percent year over year in April, but declined 30 basis points from March.

Wright said the tighter underwriting negatively impacted comp sales by between 3 percent and 5 percent for the quarter.