Tractor Supply passes billion-dollar barrier in first quarter
Reacting quickly to an early spring, Brentwood, Tenn.-based Tractor Supply Co. said its first-quarter sales increased 22% to $1.02 billion.
Same-store sales for the quarter increased 11.5%. The country’s largest farm-and-ranch retailer, which will release its full first-quarter earnings results April 25, said the same-store sales increase was driven, in part, by early spring weather in 2012.
"We are delighted to have achieved record first-quarter sales in excess of $1 billion for the first time in Tractor Supply’s history, with favorable customer response to our spring assortments and ongoing merchandising enhancements,” said CEO Jim Wright. “The structural improvements we have made to our business in recent years have enabled us to adapt our assortments more readily to meet consumer demand and react quickly to take advantage of events, such as the early spring weather seen in March.”
Based on strong results in the first quarter, Tractor Supply raised its financial expectations for 2012. Net sales are now expected to range between $4.61 billion and $4.68 billion compared with the company’s previously expected range of $4.56 billion to $4.66 billion. Same-store sales for the full year are now expected to increase 4.0% to 5.5% compared with the prior expectation for an increase of 3% to 5%. Net income is now expected to range between $260 million and $265 million compared with the prior expectation of $246 million to $253 million.
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Fastenal reports 20% gain in sales
The 2,611-location retailer and distributor of industrial supplies and specialty tools reported strong gains in sales and earnings for the quarter ended March 31.
Net sales increased 20.0% to $768.9 million, compared with $640.6 million in the same quarter of 2011. Net earnings increased 26.0% to $100.2 million, up from $79.5 million in the first quarter last year.
The company, whose motto is “Growth through customer service,” said in its release that growth in the first quarter generally continues the trend of relative strength the company saw in 2011 and most of 2010.
The company saw rapid growth in its FAST Solutions effort, or industrial vending. Fastenal increased its installed machine base by 2,345 machines in the first quarter, bringing the number to 9,978.
“We believe our FAST Solutions have the potential to be transformative to industrial distribution,” the company said in its release. The vending machines distribute high turnover construction products on-site at factories or other work environments.
During the first three months of 2012, Fastenal opened 28 new stores.
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Simpson reinforces ties with Habitat for Humanity
Simpson Strong-Tie is renewing its partnership with Habitat for the sixth straight year bringing the company’s overall donation to $1.5 million.
"Simpson Strong-Tie is excited to have reached the $1.5 million donation mark,” said Terry Kingsfather, president of Simpson Strong-Tie. “Our employees are very proud to support Habitat and to work alongside people who truly want to build and live in safe, strong, affordable homes. Habitat provides a valuable service to our community and we are honored to be a part of it."
Simpson Strong-Tie began its partnership with Habitat for Humanity International in 2007, annually providing $250,000 in cash and product donations, including the structural framing hardware (connectors and fasteners) and reinforced shear walls for new home construction. Simpson Strong-Tie has built homes with Habitat in the United States and abroad, supported Habitat’s Jimmy & Rosalynn Carter Work Projects, and responded to communities affected by natural disasters including along the U.S. Gulf Coast Region and Haiti.
“The growing support provided by faithful partners like Simpson Strong-Tie enables us to help more families around the world in need of adequate shelter,” said Jonathan Reckford, CEO of Habitat for Humanity International.