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Hart Stores to further expand the business

Apr '08
Hart Stores Inc, an operator of mid-sized department stores, announced its financial results for the fourth quarter and the 2008 fiscal year ending February 2, 2008.

For the 52 week period ended February 2, 2008, the Company posted net earnings of $3.5 million compared to $4.1 million for the 53 week period the previous year. Net earnings were $0.25 per share diluted compared to $0.30 in the same period the previous year.

Sales in the 13 week period ended February 2, 2008 totalled $49.1 million compared to $53.3 million for the 14 week period in the same quarter the previous year, a decrease of $4.2 million. Fourth quarter sales were impacted by 1 week less sales this year compared to the fourth quarter period last year which consisted of 14 weeks.

Net loss for the fourth quarter this year was $0.1 million ($0.01 per share diluted) compared to a net profit of $0.1 million ($0.01 per share diluted) in the previous year. Comparable same-store sales were down by 2.7% for the quarter compared to the same period last year.

In commenting on the results Mr. Michael Hart, President and Chief Executive Officer of Hart Stores said, "The Company's performance reflects the current retail market conditions and the impact of lower selling prices as a result of the strength of the Canadian dollar which further impacted the retail selling prices.

We will continue to pursue strategic growth opportunities in our key markets and will further expand the business by adding one more location confirmed for this Fall, over and above the four new stores that opened in the Spring of 2008."

During the first quarter of this year (Fiscal 2009) the Company will have opened four new stores, in Sault Ste. Marie and Simcoe in Ontario, Caraquet in New Brunswick and St. John's in Newfoundland. This will bring the total number of stores in operation to 80.

Hart Stores Inc

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