Smart & Final on the right track
Smart & Final's investments in e-commerce are paying off in the form of same-store sales gains.
For the third quarter ended Oct. 8, net sales at the company grew 4.5 percent to $1,457.4 million. These were driven by a 1.5 percent rise in comps and from the net sales contribution of new stores.
"Our third quarter financial performance demonstrates improving fundamentals despite a challenging industry environment," said David Hirz, President and Chief Executive Officer. "Smart & Final has a long history of business evolution and we're well positioned to support our customers' needs today and in the future. We've invested to provide customers with digital ordering and delivery platforms to allow for greater flexibility in shopping from our unique, value-oriented assortment. Looking forward to 2018, we are planning a disciplined approach to capital investment, with more modest unit growth to realize the benefits of the significant investments made in new stores in the last couple of years. As a result, we expect that our debt-to-EBITDA leverage ratio will continue to improve."
For the Smart & Final banner, net sales grew 2.9 percent to reach $1,115.2 million, compared to $1,083.4 million during the same period the previous year. Comps rose 1 percent.
For the Cash & Carry banner, net sales rose 10 percent to hit $342.1 million, compared to $311 million for the same period a year prior. Comps grew 3.4 percent.
During the quarter, Smart & Final opened one new Smart & Final Extra store and completed two conversions of its legacy Smart & Final stores to the Extra format, including one store relocation. The company also opened two new Cash & Carry stores during the period. As of the quarter’s close, Smart & Final Stores operated 316 stores, including 183 Extra stores, 70 legacy locations and 63 Cash & Carry shops.