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    Village Super Market Posts Higher Q4, Full-Year Profits

    SPRINGFIELD, N.J. -- Village Super Market, Inc., which operates 23 ShopRite stores in New Jersey and eastern Pennsylvania and is a member of Wakefern Food Corp., said yesterday that net income for the fourth quarter increased 9 percent, to $4.74 million, or $1.46 per diluted share, on improved sales and gross profit percentages.

    SPRINGFIELD, N.J. -- Village Super Market, Inc., which operates 23 ShopRite stores in New Jersey and eastern Pennsylvania and is a member of Wakefern Food Corp., said yesterday that net income for the fourth quarter increased 9 percent, to $4.74 million, or $1.46 per diluted share, on improved sales and gross profit percentages.

    The results for the chain's FY 2005 fourth quarter, ended July 30, beat last year's net of $4.35 million, or $1.37 per share, according to a financial statement released yesterday that also included results for the full fiscal year. Net income for the year was $15.54 million, or $4.86 per share, surging 17 percent ahead of FY 2004. Sales in fiscal 2005 came to $983.68 million, a rise of 2.7 percent over last year.

    Village Super Market said sales in the latest quarter, which included 13 weeks, were $253.20 million in the quarter, a decline of 2.3 percent from the year-ago period, which included 14 weeks. Excluding the additional sales week last year, sales rose in the latest quarter by 4.7 percent, which the company said was due to the opening of an 80,000-square-foot replacement store in Somers Point, N.J. in October 2004.

    Excluding the extra sales week from the prior year, same-store sales went up 4.2 percent in fiscal 2005. The company said same-store sales rose because of better performance at its recently remodeled Bernardsville, N.J. store, continued improvement in stores opened and remodeled in recent fiscal years, higher sales in one store after a competitor's store closed, and increases in retail prices in certain categories as a result of inflation. However, these same-store sales increases were partly offset by lower sales in three stores because of competitive openings, the company said.

    Gross profit grew to 26.8 percent of sales in the fourth quarter, vs. 25.6 percent last year, due to improved product mix, higher gross margins in most departments, and reduced LIFO (last in, first out) charges. These gains were partly offset by higher promotional spending, the retailer said.

    Twenty-one of the 23 Village Super Market locations average 57,000 square feet. Its Power Alley formats showcase perishables, offering such departments as bakeshops, sushi and salad bars, and take-home hot meal sections. Since its founding in 1937, the company has been run by the Sumas family.

    Wakefern is the largest retailer-owned cooperative in the United States, and owner of the ShopRite name.

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