Big Lots reports $4.3 million loss for the quarter


COLUMBUS, Ohio – Big Lots reported a net loss of $4.3 million, or 14 cents per share, for the third quarter ending Oct. 30. The company cited supply chain challenges and stimulus benefits.

The Ohio-based big-box retailer said sales for the quarter totaled $1.34 billion, a 3.1% decrease compared with the same period last year but an increase of 14.4% over 2019. Sales for the quarter were in line with what the company was expecting.

“We are pleased to have delivered the quarter in line with our guidance, and to have sustained double-digit two-year comps despite supply chain challenges and the expiration of stimulus benefits,” said Big Lots CEO Bruce Thorn. “Our absolute focus coming into Q4 has been to position ourselves appropriately with inventory and deliver an excellent holiday for our customers, and our fourth quarter is off to a strong start with November comps up 10% on a two-year basis, including record Thanksgiving and Black Friday week sales.

“Supply chain challenges will continue in the near-term, but we are aggressively managing through them by partnering closely with our manufacturing and transportation partners, strategically prioritizing receipts, creating new capacity with our forward distribution centers and DC by-pass program, and ensuring we are competitive in recruiting and retaining DC associates,” he added. “In addition, we have taken pricing actions and will continue to do so in response to volatile supply chain costs, while continuing to deliver great value for our customers.”

Thorn says he expects a record year for 2022. For the fourth quarter of fiscal 2021 the company expects diluted earnings per share in the range of $2.05 to $2.20, based on a slightly positive comparable sales increase. The company expects fourth quarter gross margin to be down approximately 150 basis points to last year, driven by freight headwinds.

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