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SUNBURY, Pa. - Weis Markets, Inc. today said its first-quarter sales increased 2.3 percent to $520.7 million and net income increased 2.9 percent to $16.2 million, as compared with the prior year.
During the 13-week period ending March 27, the company's basic and diluted earnings per share increased 3.4 percent to $.60 per share. The company's comparable-store sales increased 3.0 percent.
The company's increases in sales and net income were the result of a strong performance in its perishables departments, favorable variances in commodity pricing, and increased customer traffic and improvements in its expense control initiatives.
At the company's annual shareholders' meeting, Weis Markets' chairman, Robert F. Weis, announced the company would invest $93.2 million in its capital expansion program. This budget contains 30 store projects, including the construction of seven superstores (five are replacement units), the expansion of nine units, and the remodel of 14 others. While these projects will begin in 2004, some might not be completed until 2005.
The Weis Markets' board of directors authorized the repurchase of up to 1 million shares of the company's common stock at its April meeting. This action supersedes the previous repurchase resolution, which was approved by the company's board in 1996 and had a remaining balance of 474,504 shares.
Founded in 1912, Weis Markets operates 158 stores in six states: Pennsylvania, Maryland, New Jersey, New York, Virginia, and West Virginia. The company also owns and operates 33 SuperPetz units in 11 states.