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Hastings Ups Profit Notwithstanding Rental Woes

20 Aug, 2007 By: Erik Gruenwedel

Hasting Entertainment reported second quarter (ended July 31) income of $1.9 million, compared to profit of $200,000 during the same period last year, despite a 6% decline in same-store (open at least 12 months) rental comps.

Income at Amarillo, Texas-based Hastings was partially impacted by a $900,000 reduction to income tax expenses related to a favorable settlement of a prior year's state tax liability.

Rental revenue totaled $21.6 million, or 17.2% of sales, compared to $22.9 million, or 18.6% of sales last year.

Among packaged media sales, video game same-store comps increased 14%, followed by DVDs at 10.6%. Music comp sales declined 14.2%.

Total revenues for the second quarter increased $2.8 million, or 2.3%, to $125.9 million, compared to $123.1 million for the second quarter of fiscal 2006.

Hastings CEO John Marmaduke said he believed the second-half release slate would resuscitate sluggish DVD rentals at the chain's 145 stores throughout the Southwest.

“We will continue our focus on margin management and cost controls through the second half of the year and anticipate the crowded lineup of major releases will lift comp sales," Marmaduke said.

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