Marsh Income Slips

First-quarter results not up to our expectations

Published in CSP Daily News

INDIANAPOLIS -- A first-quarter report from Marsh Supermarkets Inc., owners of 160 Village Pantry convenience stores, shows income slipping for the 12 weeks ended June 25, 2005, even as sales and other revenue rose slightly.

Net income for the quarter was $674,000 compared to $1.6 million last year. Operating income for the first quarter was about $5.4 million compared to $6.9 million last year. Sales and other revenues for the first quarter were $409.8 million, an increase of $9.9 million or 2.5% over last year.

Sales [image-nocss] in comparable supermarkets and convenience stores were above last year by 1.6%, the fifth consecutive quarter of positive comparable store sales. Comparable store merchandise sales, which exclude gasoline sales, improved 0.6% from last year. The company excludes gasoline sales from its analysis of comparable-store merchandise sales because retail gasoline prices fluctuate widely and frequently, which make analytical comparisons difficult.

During the quarter, the company opened one Arthur's Fresh Market. The company also closed one Village Pantry during the quarter.

"First-quarter results were not up to our expectations. We have identified a number of cost-reduction and other profit-improvement actions which we expect to implement during the remainder of fiscal 2006," said Don E. Marsh, chairman and CEO. "We will open a new lifestyle store in suburban Chicago during the second quarter. We are excited about the opportunities this presents, as we enter into a new, dynamic market. We believe our superior quality and service will continue to set us apart from other supermarkets as we enter the Chicago market."

Indianapolis-based Marsh operates 69 Marsh supermarkets, 38 LoBill Foods stores, eight O'Malia Food Markets, 160 Village Pantry convenience stores, two Arthur's Fresh Market stores and one Savin*$ in Indiana and western Ohio. The company also operates Crystal Food Services, among other business ventures.