CHICAGO — True Value Company on Tuesday reported gross billings of $466.4 million for the quarter ending Sept. 27, up 2.4 percent or $10.8 million, from $455.6 million for the same period a year ago. Revenue was $350.6 million, an increase of 1.0 percent or $3.6 million, from $347.0 million in Q3 2013. The cooperative posted a quarterly net margin of $12.1 million, down 35.3 percent from a year ago.
"We had strong sales in the third quarter in large part due to the strength of our seasonal and paint departments. In addition, continued sales increases drove higher revenues in all regions and across all 10 of our product departments on a year-to-date basis," said President and Chief Executive Officer John Hartmann.
For the nine-month period ending Sept. 27, True Value reported gross billings of $1.49 billion, up 3.6 percent from Q3 2013. True Value reported revenue of $1.11 billion, an increase of 3.8 percentfrom the same period a year ago. The 2014 year-to-date net margin was $36.2 million, down 15.6 percent.
Wholesale comparable store sales were up 1.8 percent in the quarter and 4.1 percent year-to-date, on a revenue basis, which was reflected in the increase our retailers experienced with retail comparable store sales in the quarter of 2.8 percent and 3.7 percent year-to-date.
Sales from new stores exceeded lost sales from terminated stores by $16.8 million, on gross billings bases, for the first three quarters of the year.
"From a profit perspective, our year-to-date planned decline is due to the shift in timing of our 2014 Fall Reunion and, as a result, the profit from hosting reunion will be reflected in the fourth quarter," Hartmann said. "As for the rest of the business, incremental gross margin from the sales increase was offset by higher inbound and outbound freight expenses and by our planned one-time expenses and retailer subsidies related to the roll out of our new "Color by Design" paint colorant systems, equipment, displays and collateral."
During the first nine months of the year, True Value continued to grow its square footage and retailer base. In the nine-month period, the company added 679,000 square feet of relevant retail space continuing its commitment to grow Destination True Value and other relevant retail space in its network. Conversions continued at an elevated pace with 56 new members signed to-date in 2014, for an estimated $19.4 million in new annualized handled business.
True Value Company, based out of its Retail Support Center in Chicago, is one of the world's largest retailer-owned hardware cooperatives. The True Value cooperative represents independent retailer locations worldwide with retail sales in their communities totaling approximately $5.5 billion. Store identities include True Value, Grand Rental Station, Taylor Rental, Party Central, Home & Garden Showplace and Induserve Supply. Additional information on True Value Company and its retail identities is available at www.truevaluecompany.com.