RONA profits sink in third quarter

Canadian retailer and distributor RONA reported third-quarter earnings of $5.1 million, down from $47.8 million in the same quarter last year.

Consolidated revenues for the third quarter were fairly steady at $1.34 billion, down $10.6 million or less than 1% from the third quarter of 2011.

"The main drivers of our industry were flat or down during the quarter, whether we look at consumer confidence, housing starts or resales of homes or average resale price of homes," said CEO Robert Dutton during the company's earnings call. 

Factoring into the decline were the costs of converting many of the company's big-box retail locations into smaller, neighborhood stores. These costs totaled $25.7 million, the Boucherville, Quebec-based company said. The company has about 830 stores carrying the RONA banner, of which about 80 are large-format retailers.

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