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For the 13-week period ending March 26, Weis Markets Inc. reported a first-quarter net income increase of 7.0 percent to $18.6 million, vs. $17.4 million for the year-ago period, with basic and diluted earnings per share rising 6.2 percent to $.69 per share. The Sunbury, Pa.-based grocer’s comparable sales grew 0.6 percent.
As a result of the divestiture of 18 unprofitable SuperPetz units and two underperforming stores, however, Weis’ net sales dipped 0.7 percent to $659.5 million, compared with $664.3 million last year.
The grocer attributed its higher earnings to rise in store level operating income because of more efficient store operation and disciplined marketing and advertising, in addition to targeted promotions in key markets.
“Our current results mark our ninth consecutive quarter of strong operating results,” noted Weis Markets president and CEO David J. Hepfinger, adding, “Our company achieved these results at a time of continuing consumer caution and during a period when increased wholesale inflation continues to outpace retail price inflation.”
Weis Markets operates 162 stores in Pennsylvania, Maryland, New York, New Jersey and West Virginia.