Beaumont, Texas — Two major hurricanes in September contributed to sales volatility during Conn’s most recent quarter.
Net revenue rose 2.3 percent to $3.8 million for the three months, ended Oct. 31, while same-store sales fell 5.8 percent.
The multiregional chain said same-store sales were up slightly in August, were hurt in September by Hurricanes Gustav and Ike, and rose again modestly in October as consumers replaced goods damaged by the storms.
Net sales for the quarter, ended Oct. 31, of $173.9 million, increased $3.8 million, or 2.3 percent, as compared with the quarter ended Oct. 31, 2007. Net sales represent total product sales, service maintenance agreement commissions and service revenues. Same-store sales (sales recorded in stores operated for the entirety of both periods) decreased 5.8 percent for the quarter. Same-store sales were slightly positive for both August and October, with the 144 store-days lost due to Hurricanes Gustav and Ike negatively impacting September sales. Sales in the markets affected by Hurricane Ike benefited from higher product replacement sales during the month of October. Total revenues for the quarter, including revenues from finance charges and other, will be reported in the company's earnings release and conference call scheduled for Nov. 26.
The following is a summary of the key items impacting net sales during the quarter:
- The consumer electronics category showed solid growth as continued consumer interest in LCD televisions and higher home theater sales offset declines in projection and plasma television sales.
- While the home appliance category declined slightly for the quarter — as the appliance market in general showed continued weakness, with higher laundry sales offset by lower cooking and refrigeration sales — it showed a solid increase overall in October.
- Track-sales increases were largely due to higher laptop computer, DVD player, GPS device and accessory sales, partially offset by lower desktop computer, video game equipment and MP3 player sales.
- The increase in furniture and mattresses was driven by growth in furniture sales.
- Other sales increased on sales of generators and related items to customers in the markets affected by Hurricane Ike.
- The service maintenance agreement commissions increase was consistent with the overall increase in product sales.
- Eleven stores opened since Aug. 1, 2007, with one store opened during the quarter ending Oct. 31, 2008.
Net sales for the nine months, ended Oct. 31, of $559.6 million, increased $29.2 million, or 5.5 percent, as compared with the nine months in the prior-year period. Net sales represent total product sales, service maintenance agreement commissions and service revenues. Same-store sales decreased 2 percent for the nine months.