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Stater Bros. Reports 3Q Increase In Sales, Customer Count

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Stater Bros. Holdings Inc. reported Tuesday that its consolidated sales in the 13 weeks ended June 30 were $968.8 million, up $19.0 million, or 2 percent, from the same period a year prior; the prior year’s third-quarter sales were affected by the Easter holiday, which fell in the third quarter of fiscal 2012 and in the second quarter of fiscal 2013, according to the San Bernardino, Calif.-based company. Without the impact of the Easter holiday sales in the third quarter, fiscal 2013 sales increased $29.8 million, or 3.18 percent, over the same period of the previous year.

The company’s 39 weeks ended June 30 resulted in sales of $2.9 billion, up $51.2 million, or 1.80 percent, from the 39-week prior-year sales of $2.8 billion.

Same-store sales increased 3.18 percent for the 13 weeks ended June 30, and 1.80 percent for the 39 weeks of fiscal 2013 compared to the same periods of the prior year.

The company reported net income for the third quarter ended June 30 of $10.0 million compared to net income of $7.3 million for third quarter of the prior year. Net income for the 39-week period of fiscal 2013 was $27.0 million compared to $32.7 million for the 39-week period of fiscal 2012.

“We are pleased with both our sales growth and growth in customer counts in the quarter and the 39 weeks of fiscal 2013,” says Jack H. Brown, chairman and CEO of Stater Bros. “We believe that these growths are due to our valued customers’ positive response to our ‘low-price’ marketing strategy of keeping our prices as low as possible during these continued challenging economic times while continuing to provide our customers the service and value they deserve on each of their visits to their local Stater Bros. supermarket.

“At the beginning of the economic downturn, which has had such a negative impact on our customers, I said that we were in this together with them and the way to retain our customers was to share their pain by keeping our prices low where possible, not passing on the effect of inflation, and continuing to provide them with outstanding service,” Brown adds. “We have maintained this strategy over the past several years and we continue to see the positive impact on our sales growth. The reduction in our current year-to-date net income reflects a decrease in gross profit margins. We have sacrificed gross margin in the current year periods in order to continue to hold our low prices.”

Stater Bros. is the largest privately owned supermarket chain in Southern California and the largest private employer in both San Bernardino and Riverside counties, with annual sales in 2012 of $3.9 billion. The company currently operates 166 supermarkets and employs more than 18,000 people.

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