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FGL Q1 sales hampered by poor spring weather

Jun '08
The Forzani Group Ltd, Canada's largest retailer of sporting goods, reported fiscal 2009 first quarter results for the 13 weeks ended May 4, 2008.

Earnings (Loss) and Earnings (Loss) Per Share:
Net loss for the first quarter was $2.9 million, or $0.09 per share, inclusive of a loss from the operation of Athletes World, of $1.3 million, or $0.04 per share.

Retail system sales for the quarter were $334.0 million, an increase of $25.6 million, or 8.3% from the comparable 13-week sales of $308.4 million. The increase was due to the impact of prior year acquisitions, most notably Athletes World, ($24.7 million), and new store openings which offset declines in same store corporate sales of 5.2%. Franchise same store results increased 3.1%.

Corporate sales were negatively impacted in a number of areas. The strength of 4th quarter fiscal 2008 sales of winter categories depleted inventories to an extent that hampered 1st quarter, fiscal 2009 clearance events. This, coupled with unseasonable spring weather across the country, delayed the sale of spring categories which, though improved over the prior year, were below expectations.

The introduction of a new statutory holiday in Ontario, the country's largest market, further dampened sales. The Athletes World sales contribution was below expectations as spring inventories had been impacted by cancelled orders while the company operated under the protection of the Companies' Creditor Arrangement Act ("CCAA").

Revenue, consisting of corporate store sales, wholesale sales, service income, equipment rentals, franchise fees and franchise royalties, was $307.5 million, up $12.9 million, or 4.4% over the comparable period last year. Wholesale revenues were down as a result of the timing of receipts by franchise operations. This shortfall will be recouped in the 2nd quarter.

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