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Cree’s financials reflect demand for LED

BY HBSDEALER Staff

Durham, N.C.-based Cree, maker of LED technology and products, including a $10 LED bulb found at Home Depot, reported a 20% increase in second-quarter sales.

The company’s revenues of $415.1 million were up from $346.3 million in the year-ago quarter. Net income for the second quarter, ended Dec. 29, was $35.7 million, up 75% from last year’s second quarter.

CEO Chuck Swoboda pointed to strong growth in LED fixtures and LED bulbs as keys to a a record quarter. "Our strategy is working, the business is growing, and we’ve made great initial progress building the Cree brand," he said.

The company recently expanded its product line with the introduction of the new Cree LED 75-watt Replacement Bulb.

Cree’s product families include LED fixtures and bulbs, blue and green LED chips, high-brightness LEDs, lighting-class power LEDs, power-switching devices and RF devices.

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In New Mexico, a new farm store

BY HBSDEALER Staff

Brentwood, Tenn.-based Tractor Supply Co. will open a 19,000-sq.-ft. store in Tucumcari, N.M., in September, according to local press reports. 

The store will be the 12th Tractor Supply location in the state, and one of the 1,245 stores in the nation’s largest farm and ranch chain.

In the first three quarters of the company’s current fiscal year, Tractor Supply opened 71 new stores and closed two stores. Late last year, the retailer established its first stores in the states of Wyoming and Nevada.

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Ranking the buzz of brands

BY HBSDEALER Staff

The recently released YouGov Brand Index Buzz rankings had some familiar names at and near the top of its 2013 U.S. listing.

Amazon.com, which ranked 12th on the HCN Top 300 Retailer Scoreboard, appeared in the top spot with a Buzz Ranking of 30.6. 

The rankings were based on the YouGov survey of respondents, who were asked "If you’ve heard anything about the brand in the last two weeks, through advertising, news or word of mouth, was it positive or negative?" 

Lowe’s, which was credited for its well-received Twitter Vine campaign that captured home improvement concepts in six second videos, ranked fifth on the overall chart, with a Buzz rating of 25.9. 

Home Depot scored 21.8, good enough for 15th place, just ahead of the iPad and the iPhone. John Deere rounded out home improvement brands in the top 25 with a 20.3 rating and 25th ranking.

A separate Specialty Retail category of Buzz rankings produced the following results: Lowe’s, 25.9; Walgreens, 24.8; Home Depot, 21.8; Best Buy, 15.5; and Ace Hardware, 15.4.

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