Following the passing of its founder, Mark Butler, Ollie’s Bargain Outlet reported a solid third quarter and named John Swygert its new president and CEO.
Net income increased 8.6% to $27 million, or $0.41 per diluted share, in the third quarter of fiscal 2019 compared with net income of $24.8 million, or $0.38 per diluted share, in the third quarter of fiscal 2018.
Net sales totaled $327 million in the third quarter of fiscal 2019, an increase of 15.3% compared with net sales of $283.6 million in the third quarter of fiscal 2018. The increase was largely driven by strong new store performance from the 42 stores opened in fiscal 2019, including 14 former Toys R Us locations. Comparable store sales decreased 1.4%, following a 4.6% increase in the same period last year.
John Swygert, the company’s new president and CEO, said, “Our profound sadness at the unexpected passing of our founder and friend, Mark Butler, eclipses the results we posted in the third quarter. As we pay tribute to the visionary businessman and special person that was Mark, we remain committed to the foundation upon which he built Ollie’s: offering great brands at great values, or as Mark called it, ‘Good Stuff Cheap.’ We were pleased to deliver strong results during the third quarter, having addressed the challenges we faced in the prior quarter. Undoubtedly, Mark was a driving force in building Ollie’s, creating an exceptional business model and developing a strong and highly competent leadership team. It is the strength of Mark’s legacy together with that team that give us confidence in our ability to continue to drive long-term profitable growth and shareholder value into the future.”
Swygert has been interim president and CEO since December 2 after the unexpected passing of the company’s founder, Mark Butler. He was also named a member of the company’s board of directors.
On behalf of the Ollie’s board of directors, Rich Zannino said, “John has done an extraordinary job as Ollie’s chief operating officer and prior to that as our chief financial officer. Working alongside Mark for the past nearly 16 years, John has been a big key to our success. The board wholeheartedly encouraged Mark’s grooming of John as his successor and John’s development and performance over this period has been outstanding by every measure. John’s deep and detailed knowledge of the business, passion for the Ollie’s culture and demonstrated performance make him the clear choice as Ollie’s president and CEO and he has the board’s steadfast support.”