Dollar General dazzles again, extends comp streak

Mike Troy
Editorial Director
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Dollar General CEO Todd Vasos, second from right, with store associates.

Dollar General is off to a solid start in 2020 after reporting another year of record sales and store expansion.

The operator of 16,278 stores extended its streak of same store sales growth to 30 consecutive years with the release of results for the fourth quarter and 2019 fiscal years that saws comps increase 3.2% and 3.9%, respectively. Don’t look for that streak to end in 2020 as the company has forecast another year of same store sales growth and also has plans for 1,000 new stores.

We are very pleased with our fourth quarter results, capping off a strong year of performance across the company,” said Todd Vasos, Dollar General’s CEO. “Our value-and-convenience proposition continues to resonate with both new and existing customers, and our unique real estate footprint remains a competitive advantage. As we enter 2020 from a position of strength, we will continue to keep our core customer at the center of all we do, while remaining steadfast in our efforts to deliver long-term shareholder value.”

Between the same store sales growth and addition of new selling space, Dollar General’s fourth quarter sales increased 7.6% to $7.2 billion. The gains were driven by the ideal combination of growth in customer traffic and average transaction size.

The company reported net income of $535.4 million for the fourth quarter of 2019 compared to $483.2 million in the fourth quarter of 2018. Diluted earnings per share increased 14.1% to $2.10 for the fourth quarter of 2019 compared to diluted EPS of $1.84 in the fourth quarter of 2018.

For the full year, sales increased 8.3% to $27.8 billion, compared to $25.6 billion in fiscal year 2018. Same-store sales in fiscal year 2019 included growth in each of the company’s four product categories - consumables, seasonal, home, and apparel.