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EPS increases 29.2% at Hibbett
May '11
Hibbett Sports Inc, a sporting goods retailer, announced results for the first quarter ended April 30, 2011.

Financial Highlights

Net sales for the 13-week period ended April 30, 2011, increased 10.4% to $203.7 million compared with $184.5 million for the 13-week period ended May 1, 2010. Comparable store sales increased 6.8%. Net income for the 13-week period ended April 30, 2011, increased 23.1% to $21.3 million compared with $17.3 million for the 13-week period ended May 1, 2010. Earnings per diluted share increased 29.2% to $0.76 compared with $0.59 for the 13-week period ended May 1, 2010.

Jeff Rosenthal, President and Chief Executive Officer, stated, "The record first quarter operating margin of 16.8% is a direct result of cleaner inventories, improved merchandise assortment execution, and continued benefits from our investments in systems. This marks our sixth consecutive quarter of comparable store sales increases and our seventh consecutive quarter of earnings increases. We are pleased with the strong comparable store sales gains, which were led by activewear and footwear and feel good about the strong start to the second quarter as well as our expectations for Fiscal 2012 based on our merchandising strategies, solid inventory position and new store sales productivity."

For the first quarter, Hibbett opened 8 new stores, expanded 4 high performing stores and closed 7 underperforming stores bringing the store base to 799 in 26 states as of April 30, 2011. For Fiscal 2012, the Company expects to open approximately 50 to 55 new stores, close 10 to 15 stores and expand 15 high performing stores.

Liquidity and Stock Repurchases

Hibbett ended the first quarter of Fiscal 2012 with $85.3 million of available cash and cash equivalents on the consolidated balance sheet, no bank debt and full availability under its $80.0 million unsecured credit facilities.

During the first quarter, the Company repurchased 732,547 shares of common stock for a total expenditure of $23.7 million. Approximately $189.6 million of the current $250.0 million authorization remains for future stock repurchases.

Fiscal 2012 Outlook

The Company increased its earnings guidance for Fiscal 2012 to a range of $1.80 to $1.95 per diluted share and an increase in comparable store sales in the low to mid single digit range.

Hibbett Sports Inc operates sporting goods stores in small to mid-sized markets, predominately in the Southeast, Southwest, Mid-Atlantic and the lower Midwest regions of the United States.

Hibbett Sports Inc

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