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Publix Super Markets Inc. reported sales for the first quarter of 2015 of $8.3 billion, a 6.8 percent rise from last year's $7.8 billion. Comparable-store sales grew 5.3 percent.
The grocer's Q1 net earnings came to $548.9 million, versus $493.7 million in the year-ago period, an 11.2 percent increase. Earnings per share rose to 71 cents for the quarter, up from 63 cents per share last year.
As of May 1, Publix's stock price rose from $39.05 per share to $42.10 per share. The company's stock isn't publicly traded and is sold only to current Publix associates and members of its board of directors.
Noting he was "delighted" by "another significant increase in our stock price," CEO Ed Crenshaw went on to "thank our associates for delivering premier customer service that makes shopping a pleasure."
Privately-owned and -operated by its 175,500 employees, Lakeland, Fla.-based Publix has 1,101 stores – 24 more than in the year-ago period -- in Florida, Georgia, Alabama, South Carolina, Tennessee and North Carolina.