For the first quarter, Bed Bath & Beyond saw comps slip along with earnings as the company continues to invest in information technology and other store initiatives.
Net earnings for the quarter were $43.6 million, or 32 cents per diluted share, versus $75.3 million, or 53 cents per diluted share, in the fiscal year earlier. Earnings included a six cents per share unfavorable impact from severance costs incurred in the first quarter and a favorable impact of approximately five cents per share from the adoption of a new accounting standard.
Adjusted for one-time items, Bed Bath & Beyond diluted earnings per share topped a MarketBeat consensus analyst estimate by two cents.
Recent executive changes include the departure of Arthur Stark, who was Bed Bath & Beyond’s president and chief merchandising officer. On June 5, Bed Bath & Beyond named Eugene Castagna president and COO. He had been COO.
Comparable sales decreased by 0.6% in the quarter year over year, with growth in customer-facing digital channels offset by a mid single digit percentage decline in brick and mortar store comps.
Net sales were $2.75 million versus $2.74 million in the fiscal year prior. Operating profit was $81.2 million versus $147 million in the fiscal year before.
In a conference call, Steven Temares, Bed Bath & Beyond CEO, noted that the company is rolling out “next-generation” stores, including remodels designed to increase productivity, while it also works to optimize core assortments and reduce corporate inventory. Next generation stores, he said, have been posting transaction numbers that are 10% to 15% higher than other Bed Bath & Beyond locations.