Fastenal’s Annual Sales Up 5% After Strong Q4

The company posted better-than-expected earnings to wrap up 2023.

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Fastenal Co. on Thursday reported a more than 5% increase in sales last year after wrapping up 2023 with a jump in fourth-quarter revenue.

The Minnesota-based fastener and industrial product distributor posted more than $7.3 billion in 2023 sales, up 5.2% from the nearly $7 billion in sales in 2022. Gross profit was up 4.3% to $3.35 billion last year, while operating income rose 5.2% to $1.53 billion. Net earnings were up 6.3% to $1.15 billion, which translated to full-year diluted net earnings of $2.02 per share.

For the fourth quarter, the company reported $1.76 billion in sales ‚ÄĒ up from nearly $1.7 billion in the final three months of 2022 ‚ÄĒ while quarterly earnings climbed by 8.5% to more than $266 million. Diluted net quarterly earnings of $0.46 per share narrowly exceeded Wall Street forecasts.

‚ÄúWe experienced higher unit sales in the fourth quarter of 2023 primarily due to growth at our ‚ÄėOnsite‚Äô locations, particularly those newly opened in 2023 and 2022, and with large customers,‚ÄĚ company officials said in a statement. 

The company reported 58 new Onsite locations in the fourth quarter and 326 over the full year. Officials added that its technology and service model was ‚Äúparticularly impactful‚ÄĚ with larger accounts, which, in turn, disproportionately benefited its manufacturing end-markets. Its manufacturing segments continued their growth trajectories in the fourth quarter, which offset more declines among resellers and in non-residential construction.

In addition, the company saw a more than 9% jump in safety supply sales in the latest quarter ‚ÄĒ a reflection of purchases by retailers with major distribution networks during the holiday season.

Fastenal reported a 28.3% increase in e-commerce sales on a daily average basis in the fourth quarter, representing nearly one quarter of its total sales during the period.

Fastenal also reported its December sales totals on Thursday. Net sales were flat, which officials attributed to one fewer selling day compared to the last month of 2022; on a daily average basis, sales were up by 5.3%.

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