Tuesday, October 6th3.3°C

Shoppers says underwhelming cold season, winter storms hit fourth-quarter profit

TORONTO - Fewer colds and nasty winter storms left Shoppers Drug Mart Corp. (TSX:SC) with lower profits in the fourth quarter.

The pharmacy chain said Thursday it was forced to close 112 locations for as long as two days in late December when severe winter weather slammed Central Canada, causing massive power outages.

The fallout contributed to lower profits of $169.4 million, or 85 cents per share, for the quarter ended Dec. 28. That compared with profits of $175 million, or 85 cents per share, in the same period a year ago.

Also factoring into the results were $3 million of expenses from the pending a takeover by Loblaw (TSX:L) valued at $12.4-billion.

Excluding those costs, Shoppers said it earned $172 million or 86 cents per share, falling in line with analyst expectations, according to Thomson Reuters.

Revenue totalled $2.75 billion, up from $2.72 billion a year earlier, while its same-store sales were up 1.2 per cent.

"By any measure, our performance in the fourth quarter of 2013 was a successful conclusion to what was a very successful year," president and CEO Domenic Pilla told analysts during a conference call.

"However, (it) remains a very competitive and challenging marketplace."

Shoppers and other retailers have faced increased competition as Target Corp. rolls out its Canadian expansion — one of the factors underlying Loblaw's expansion in the pharmacy sector.

Consumers expect lower prices as they look to the number of alternatives in the retail market.

"Our percentage of sales on promotion products continues to increase as a percentage of total sales," Pilla said.

Pharmacy sales, which have been pressured by a lower value of prescriptions, increased 0.5 per cent on a same-store basis.

Non-prescription sales, referred to as front store sales, were up 1.1 per cent.

However, Pilla said the early cough and cold season fell short of last year, which meant fewer people bought over-the-counter remedies.

The Loblaw takeover of Shoppers Drug Mart still requires approval from the Competition Bureau, expected early this year.

Shoppers shares closed three cents higher at $58.07 Thursday on the Toronto Stock Exchange.

The Canadian Press

Read more Business News

Recent Trending

Today's Market
S&P TSX13552.20+212.46
S&P CDNX529.91+4.35
S&P 5001987.05+35.69
CDN Dollar0.7642-0.0002
Natural Gas2.483+0.033

Okanagan Companies
Pacific Safety0.215+0.000
QHR Technologies Inc1.22+0.03
Metalex Ventures0.06+0.00
Russel Metals22.51+1.03
Copper Mountain Mining0.50+0.08
Colorado Resources0.07-0.01
ReliaBrand Inc0.004-0.000
Sunrise Resources Ltd0.02+0.00
Mission Ready Services0.095+0.005
Decisive Dividend Corp3.49+0.00
Diamcor Mining0.90+0.02



23761705988 Victoria st
4 bedrooms 3 baths
more details
Click here to feature your property
Please wait... loading

Perfect (reno'd) home

Photo: Thinkstock.comHow many times have you found a home in the perfect location, but it needs too much work as per the home inspection? There is a great program available through most lenders that w...

Living beyond 100

Photo: ContributedThere was a time most careers involved an apprenticeship of one sort another. Some official, others involving years of servitude, and others time simply spent watching and emulating ...

5 Claim misconceptions

Photo: Thinkstock.comIf you have been hurt in an accident or as a result of medical negligence you will likely look to your friends and family for some advice on how to deal with the situation. These ...




Member of BC Press Council