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AutoZone’s Q4 Earnings Beat Estimates as Sales Rise 3.3%

Thursday, September 22, 2016 5:09
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(Before It's News)

Auto parts retailer AutoZone, Inc. (NYSE:AZO) this morning posted better-than-expected fiscal Q4 results, as profit, revenue, and same-store sales all rose from last year.

The Memphis-based company reported fiscal Q4 net income of $14.30 per share, beating Wall Street estimates of $14.24. Revenue rose 3.3% from last year to $3.4 billion, which was in-line with analysts’ view.

Related: see what ETFs own the most AZO

Same-store sales, an important indicator of a retailer’s health, gained 1% from the year-ago period. Also known as comparable sales or simply “comps,” these sales measure results only from stores open at least one year.

Other interesting notes from the report included:

  • Gross profit, as a percentage of sales, was 52.8% (vs. 52.5% for the same period last year). The improvement was attributed to lower acquisition costs, and partially offset by higher supply chain costs associated with current year inventory initiatives (-19 bps).
  • Inventory increased 6.1% over last year, driven by new stores and increased product placement.
  • AutoZone repurchased 482 thousand shares of its common stock at a cost of $370 million during the fourth quarter, at an average price of $767 per share.

The company didn’t provide guidance for fiscal Q1 or the full year 2017.

From the press release:

“I would like to thank our entire organization for the strong performance delivered this past fiscal year. We are pleased to report our fortieth consecutive quarter of double digit earnings per share growth. Since our inception, we’ve been committed to providing superior customer service and trustworthy advice: our key points of differentiation. This commitment to our customers leads us to deliver exceptional financial performance. For the year, we reached many milestones which included generating $10.6 billion in sales, opening 156 new domestic AutoZone stores, 43 AutoZone stores internationally, and six IMC branches. Additionally, the ongoing rollout of our inventory availability initiatives, including expanding our multi-deliveries per week to stores and opening mega hub locations, has gone very well. We expect to continue with these initiatives in 2017 while expanding our supply chain network with the already announced planned openings of two or three new domestic distribution centers over the next few years. In order to continue to meet our customers’ needs across all selling channels, we continue to invest capital in our product availability initiatives across our businesses. While investing to grow, we will remain committed to our disciplined approach to increasing operating earnings and utilizing our capital effectively,” said Bill Rhodes, Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer.


AutoZone shares rose $1.65 (+0.22%) to $753.10 in premarket trading Thursday. Year-to-date, AZO has gained 1.29%, versus a 5.86% rise in the benchmark S&P 500 during the same period.

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