Friday, March 12, 2010

BJ's Post 4Q Profit, Sales Climb admist Bad February Weather....

NEW YORK - FEBRUARY 23:  A trader works on the...Image by Getty ImagesDaylife via
Fourth Quarter:
BJ's Wholesale Club Inc. released their 4Q numbers on Wednesday, finding  that its fiscal fourth-quarter profit climbed 5 percent and higher gasoline prices led to increased revenue.
But the third-largest warehouse club operator also gave a 2010 earnings forecast below analysts' predictions. .
BJ's profit increased to $55.1 million, or $1.01 per share. That compares with earnings of $52.7 million, or 91 cents per share, a year ago

From Chicago Sun Times:
Sales for the period ended Jan. 30 rose 9% to $2.8 billion from $2.56 billion on membership fee growth and increased net sales, beating the $2.79 billion forecast of analysts polled by Thomson Reuters.

Sales at stores open at least a year grew 4.6 percent, with a 2.3 percent benefit from gasoline sales. That figure is a key measure of a retailer's performance because it looks at the results of existing stores rather than newly opened ones.

The results are an improvement from the third quarter, when the sales figure fell 2.5 percent.
Earlier in the morning rival Costco Wholesale Corp. reported that its second-quarter profit rose 25 percent as strong overseas sales growth and increased gasoline prices lifted its revenue.

BJ's, based in Natick, Mass., has seen success during the recession as budget-minded shoppers have come to its stores for deals on food and other necessities.

The company's full-year profit slipped 2 percent to $132.1 million, or $2.42 per share, from $134.6 million, or $2.28 per share, in the prior year. Adjusted earnings were $2.48 per share.

Annual revenue increased 2 percent to $10.19 billion from $10.03 billion.

Sales at stores open at least a year fell 1.9 percent, with a 5.9 percent drag from lower overall gas prices. Taking out gas sales, the figure climbed 4 percent for the year.

BJ's forecast a profit between $2.54 and $2.64 for fiscal 2010, but that's short of the $2.71 per share that analysts are looking for. The company anticipates first-quarter earnings in a range of 40 cents to 45 cents per share. Wall Street predicts a quarterly profit of 43 cents per share.

February Sales:

BJ’s Wholesale Club, Inc. (NYSE:BJ): reported that sales for February 2010 increased by 12.8% to $755.2 million from $669.6 million in February 2009. Comparable club sales increased by 7.5% for the month of February 2010, including a contribution from sales of gasoline of 3.6%. Excluding gasoline sales, merchandise comparable club sales increased by 3.9%.  A calendar shift in the timing of the Super Bowl from January last year to February this year had a positive impact on merchandise comparable club sales of approximately 2%. However, severe winter storms had a negative impact of 2-2.5%.

Four Weeks Ended    Four Weeks Ended 
                                     February 27, 2010   February 28, 2009 
----------------------------------  ------------------  ------------------ 
Merchandise comparable club sales          3.9%                8.2% 
----------------------------------  ------------------  ------------------ 
Impact of gasoline sales                   3.6%               (7.6%) 
----------------------------------  ------------------  ------------------ 
Comparable club sales                      7.5%                0.6% 
----------------------------------  ------------------  ------------------ 
     Sales Results for February 2010 
             ($ in thousands) 
     Four Weeks Ended          % Change 
February 27,  February 28,   Net    Comp. 
    2010          2009       Sales   Sales 
------------  ------------  ------  ------ 
 $ 755,241     $ 669,589    12.8%    7.5% 

The Company provided the following additional information regarding comparable club sales for February 2010:
  • By week, the strongest sales increase was in week one, reflecting a calendar shift in the timing of the Super Bowl, and the smallest increase was in week four, reflecting severe snow storms in the Northeast.
  • By major region, the strongest increases were in the Southeast and Upstate New York. The smallest increases were in the Mid-Atlantic and Metro New York regions.
  • Excluding sales of gasoline, traffic increased by approximately 3% and the average transaction amount increased by approximately 1%.
  • Sales of food increased by approximately 7% and general merchandise sales decreased by about 1%.
  • Departments with the strongest sales increases compared to last year included bakery, breakfast foods, cigarettes, computers, dairy, deli, frozen foods, furniture, house wares, juices, produce, small appliances and snacks. Weaker departments versus last year included books, household chemicals, DVDs, televisions and trash bags.
BJ’s press releases and filings with the SEC are available on the Internet at

Fourth Quarter and Fiscal Year-end Conference Call available for download:

The financial future of BJ's looks pretty stable and solid, thanks to all the great team members who make the entire machine run.

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Monday, March 01, 2010

Poll Results, Comments: Jan/Feb 2010: Star of Year, Lawsuit, Vacations, Oh My!

Wide angle view of BJ's Wholesale club in VA.Image via Wikipedia
Greetings everyone, thanks for the out pour of comments and emails the past two months!

The poll we had up has just closed, here are the results:

Question: Do you like the idea of BJ's creating more 85,000 sqft stores?

Yes: 81 (69%)

No:  35 (30%)

Looks like most of you do like the idea of smaller stores, check out our new poll to the left of this post.  If you'd like to suggest an idea for a poll send us an email!

Okay, onward and upward, as most of you know BJ's 4Q numbers are being released this coming Wednesday, until then we thought we'd review this past post's comments and discussions that have been flooding our email accounts:


Anonymous 'expects more Payroll cuts to offset this pay out [from wage and hour suit]...."

Anonymous says "Today's hourly wagers are not uneducated or dumb. HR would do well to see that respect is a two way street."

Anonymous said that 'Home Office has to realize that its the workers that make or break a business, and if they keep on doing the things they have been, there will not be a BJ's in the near future as today, there are many alternatives for the consumer...'

Anonymous said 'the Sad thing is, even with this lawsuit settled, there are Gms still running their clubs this way. They wont learn a lesson until the Labor board gets involved. The communication between management and hourly is atrocious.'
Anonymous wonders 'Why do you think there are so many Overnight Manager Positions listed on BJ's Employment site?'
One writer gives their first hand experience of the lawsuit
"This is not about Costco, or Sam's club, This is about BJ's and things that happen there. Nothing will ever improve if people just shut up and let things go on as is"
And one anonymous poster thinks if the club would become union, it would instantly become an under performing store and shut down.
 One poster says remember you must pay union dues, while another says 'Oh big deal unions collect dues'
Star of year 
Anonymous wonders how a cart-person can win SOY.

Anonymous tells us three things they look for in the SOY

Anonymous says "Its a favoritism thing. At our club, a part timer who is late a great deal, texts on his cell phone during work, etc got SOY but because he is a butt kisser, he gets on avg 45-50 hours a week"

Anonymous thinks the SOY program creates more disconnect and resentment than good.

Anonymous thinks SOY is completely arbitrary, while another thinks the award is well deserving to certain workers.

Anonymous wants to know if anyone feels "the new system for paid Vacation and sick time is going to screw us?" 

Anonymous thinks the new program is better than the old.

Anonymous says it "seems that we are losing three weeks vacation time under this new system."

Anonymous wonders if that is true [losing three weeks vacation] why aren't we seeking union protection?

Anonymous says that "Misinformation abounds. No one is losing vaca time"

And Anonymous says "The biggest obstacle to union organizing efforts is simply the high turnover among the rank-and-file of a typical retail store. In some places, 60 or 70 percent of the staff can change in a typical year."

We'll have more to speak about on Wednesday, until then let the discussions continue and thanks again.