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Costco ends year with strong sales, earnings

BY Allison Cerra

ISSAQUAH, Wash. — Costco reported fourth-quarter sales of $31.5 billion, an increase of 14% from $27.6 billion for the same period last year.

Net income for the quarter was $609 million, or $1.39 per diluted share, compared with $478 million, or $1.08 per diluted share, during the fourth quarter of fiscal 2011.

Comparable-store sales, excluding fuel, rose 6% at U.S. stores, 7% internationally and 6% for the total company.

Net sales for the 53-week fiscal year 2012 were nearly $97.1 billion, an increase of 12% from about $87.1 billion in the prior fiscal year. Total comps for the year were up 6%.

Net income for the year was $1.7 billion, or $3.89 per diluted share, compared with about $1.5 billion, or $3.30 per diluted share, during fiscal year 2011.

Costco ended its 2012 fiscal year with 608 warehouses in operation, including 439 in the United States and Puerto Rico, 82 in Canada, 32 in Mexico, 22 in the United Kingdom, 13 in Japan, nine in Taiwan, eight in Korea, and three in Australia.

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Shaw’s teams with Boston public schools on fitness initiative

BY Michael Johnsen

WEST BRIDGEWATER, Mass. — Shaw’s and Star Market, Boston Moves for Health and the Fuel Up to Play 60 program on Tuesday announced they are teaming up with Boston Public Schools to support kids’ health through the creation of "Workout Wednesdays," an integrated health and fitness program.

Beginning Oct. 10 and running through the month, Shaw’s will host a Boston Public School class at one of its stores each Wednesday. The program was developed in support of Boston Moves for Health, Boston mayor Thomas Menino’s initiative to improve the health and fitness of the city.

"Boston Moves for Health is all about inspiring lots of little changes in people’s lifestyles that add up to better health for individuals and our city as a whole," Menino said. "We’re grateful to have partners like Shaw’s and Fuel Up to Play 60 that understand that we all have a responsibility to do everything we can to make sure today’s youth grow up to be healthy adults, and I’m excited that this partnership will take our efforts to the next level."

"Supporting health-and-wellness initiatives is important to us at Shaw’s and Star Market,” Shaw’s president Mike Stigers said. "We are excited to be able to join with Mayor Menino on this program to help educate kids on how to be active and eat healthy."

 

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Perrigo launches store-brand nicotine mini lozenges

BY Michael Johnsen

ALLEGAN, Mich. — Perrigo on Wednesday announced that it has received approval from the Food and Drug Administration for its abbreviated new drug applications to market over-the-counter nicotine polacrilex mini lozenge USP in both 2-mg and 4-mg strengths. 

The mint-flavored mini lozenge is comparable with GlaxoSmithKline’s Nicorette Mini Lozenge and is indicated to reduce withdrawal symptoms, including nicotine craving, associated with quitting smoking.

"This approval strengthens Perrigo’s leading store brand position in smoking cessation products, which also includes coated and uncoated flavored gums and lozenges," Joseph Papa, Perrigo’s chairman, president and CEO Joseph Papa said. 

Nicorette Mini Lozenge is selling at an annual rate estimated at more than $30 million across all retail outlets. The product is expected to begin shipping in the next 90 days, Perrigo reported.


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