hhgregg Posts Smaller Loss

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Indianapolis-based hhgregg Inc. (NYSE: HGG) is reporting a fiscal first quarter loss of $1.3 million, compared to a loss of $5.7 million for the same period a year earlier. Chief Executive Officer Dennis May says a slight increase in same store sales helped narrow the quarterly loss. August 1, 2013

News Release(Indianapolis, Ind.) - hhgregg, Inc. (“hhgregg” or the “Company”) today reported a net loss of $1.3 million, or $0.04 per diluted share, for the three month period ended June 30, 2013, compared with a net loss of $5.7 million, or $0.16 per diluted share, for the comparable prior year period. The decrease in net loss for the three month period ended June 30, 2013 was largely due to a comparable store sales increase of 0.8%, a decrease in SG&A as a percentage of net sales and a decrease in net advertising expense as a percentage of net sales, offset by a decrease in gross profit as a percentage of net sales.

Dennis May, President and CEO commented, “We are pleased with the early results and consumer feedback on the new product assortments that we have introduced and will continue to expand and refine these category additions throughout the coming year. We remain committed to improving productivity levels across our existing store base and are pleased with the early progress on our strategic initiatives to not only reshape our sales mix, but to expand our customer base and enhance our service offerings. The quarter's results significantly outperformed our prior year earnings comparison, due to our positive comparable store sales and lapping the cost cutting measures put in place during the second quarter of the prior fiscal year, and are in-line with our expectations.”

Net sales for the three months ended June 30, 2013 increased 7.2% to $524.9 million from $489.9 million in the comparable prior year period. The increase in net sales for the three month period was the result of a comparable store sales increase of 0.8% and the net addition of 18 stores during the past 12 months.

The increase in comparable store sales for the three months ended June 30, 2013 was driven primarily by an increase in comparable store sales in the appliances, computing and wireless and home products categories, partially offset by a decline in the consumer electronics category. The appliance category increase in comparable store sales was driven by an increase in both the average selling price and units sold. The growth in the computing and wireless category was led by increased demand for tablets, partially offset by a decline in mobile phones and notebook computers. The increase in comparable store sales for the home products category was primarily a result of a double digit comparable store sales increase in mattresses, in addition to sales from the introduction of furniture and fitness equipment categories. The consumer electronics category comparable store sales decline was driven primarily by a double digit comparable store sales decrease in televisions, largely resulting from our strategy of offering fewer entry level models.

Gross profit margin, expressed as gross profit as a percentage of net sales, decreased for the three months ended June 30, 2013 to 29.5% from 29.9% for the comparable prior year period. The decrease was largely due to decreases in gross profit margin rates in the consumer electronics and computing and wireless categories, partially offset by a slight increase in gross profit margin rate in the appliance category.

SG&A expense, as a percentage of net sales, decreased 152 basis points for the three months ended June 30, 2013 compared to the prior year period. The decrease in SG&A as a percentage of net sales was largely a result of decreases in wage expense, employee benefit expense and occupancy costs as a percentage of net sales. The decrease was due to continued cost cutting measures implemented in the second quarter of the prior fiscal year, coupled with the leveraging effect of the net sales increase.

Net advertising expense, as a percentage of net sales, decreased 70 basis points during the three months ended June 30, 2013 compared to the prior year period. The decrease as a percentage of net sales was driven largely by the leveraging effect of the net sales increase and decreased advertising spend in comparable markets.

Depreciation expense, as a percentage of net sales, increased 18 basis points for the three months ended June 30, 2013 compared to the prior year period. The increase as a percentage of net sales was primarily due to the capital spend associated with the 18 new stores opened during the past 12 months.

Effective income tax rate for the three months ended June 30, 2013 decreased to 39.3% from 40.7% in the comparable prior year period. The decrease in the effective income tax rate is primarily the result of higher state income tax credits recognized in fiscal 2013. The additional state income tax credits increased effective income tax rate for the first quarter of fiscal 2013 due to the net loss recognized.

Share Repurchase

During the fiscal quarter ended June 30, 2013, the Company repurchased 698,369 shares of its common stock at a total cost of $10.3 million. The shares were repurchased under the Company's $50 million share repurchase program that was authorized by the Company's Board of Directors on May 16, 2013 and expires on May 22, 2014. As of June 30, 2013, the Company had approximately $39.7 million authorized to repurchase shares of common stock remaining under the current share repurchase program.

Revolving Credit Facility

On July 29, 2013, Gregg Appliances entered into Amendment No. 1 to the Amended and Restated Loan and Security Agreement (the “Amended Facility”). The Amended Facility increased the maximum credit available from $300 million to $400 million, subject to borrowing base availability, and extended the term of the facility to July, 29, 2018.

Jeremy Aguilar, Chief Financial Officer of the Company, commented “During the quarter, we continued to build on our strong balance sheet and liquidity position by generating year-over-year positive cash flow gains while continuing to execute on our share repurchase plan. Additionally, we have further strengthened our capital position and liquidity through the newly executed amendment to our credit facility. This new amendment allows us to benefit from an advantageous debt market by lowering our interest rate, increasing the size of our facility from $300 million to $400 million, and extending the term for five years. We believe we are appropriately capitalized and well positioned to execute on our core initiatives and long-term growth strategies.”

Guidance

The Company is not updating its fiscal year guidance in connection with its first quarter earnings given that the Company is only one quarter through its fiscal year and due to the relatively small seasonal influence of the first quarter's earnings on the entire fiscal year. The Company expects to provide an update to its annual guidance in connection with the release of its second fiscal quarter results.About hhgregg

hhgregg is a specialty retailer of home appliances, televisions, computers, consumer electronics, home entertainment furniture, mattresses, fitness equipment and related services operating under the name hhgregg™. hhgregg currently operates 228 stores in Alabama, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Mississippi, Missouri, New Jersey, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, West Virginia, and Wisconsin.

Source: hhGregg Inc.