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DVD Transition Helps Hastings

23 May, 2002 By: Joan Villa

Thanks to strong results for DVD and video games, Hastings Entertainment boosted same-store sales increase of 5.3 percent and posted a profit of $569,000 for the first quarter ended Apr. 30 versus a loss of $767,000 in the year-ago quarter.

Total revenue for the 141-store chain climbed 3.4 percent to $112.8 million.

DVD revenues jumped 56 percent and video games spiked 222 percent, the company reported. However, video rentals decreased by three-tenths of a percent due to a weak new-release schedule and competition from the televised Winter Olympics.

President and CEO John Marmaduke said the chain of 20,000-square-foot multimedia superstores will boost its focus on books, a category which rose 3 percent in sales for the quarter.

The Amarillo, Tex.-based retailer reiterated expectations that annual net income will total 55 cents to 60 cents per share for fiscal 2002.

As of Apr. 30, the company has repurchased 648,500 shares of stock totaling $3.2 million at an average cost of $4.91 per share. The repurchase program was announced in September. Following the earnings announcement, Hastings stock was down 10 percent to $7.70 per share in mid-morning trading.

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