MEMPHIS, Tenn.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Fred's, Inc. (NASDAQ: FRED) today reported sales for the four-week month of May, which ended May 31, 2014.
Fred's total sales for the month were $151.9 million, approximately flat with $152.3 million in May 2013. Comparable store sales for the month declined 0.4% compared with a 0.5% decrease in the same period last year.
Fred's total sales for the first four months of fiscal 2014 decreased 0.6% to $650.2 million compared with $653.8 million for the same period last year. On a comparable store basis, year-to-date sales declined 1.5% versus a 1.1% decrease for the year-earlier period.
Commenting on the announcement, Bruce A. Efird, Chief Executive Officer, said, "Although comparable store sales declined slightly in May, we were pleased to see sales strengthen in the last week of the month with the impact of the first ad in our new marketing and branding program. As we covered on our recent conference call, this new marketing and branding program is designed to increase traffic and heighten customer awareness of our category diversity in the face of competition. The initial results were encouraging, and we think this new program will be effective in driving traffic and sales growth as we work toward full implementation of the marketing program by mid-July. Together with the updating of our store layout to emphasize the convenience advantages of our 15,000-square-foot store, it will better position Fred's to serve more of the need-based categories and provide customers with faster and easier shopping experiences."
Fred's, Inc. operates 704 discount general merchandise stores, including 21 franchised Fred's stores, in the southeastern United States. For more information about the Company, visit Fred's website at www.fredsinc.com.
Comments in this news release that are not historical facts are forward-looking statements that involve risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those projected in the forward-looking statements. A reader can identify forward-looking statements because they are not limited to historical facts or they use such words as "outlook," guidance," "may," "should," "could," "believe," "anticipate," "plan," "expect," "estimate," "forecast," "goal," "intend," "committed," "continue," or "will likely result" and similar expressions that concern the Company's strategy, plans, intentions or beliefs about future occurrences or results. These risks and uncertainties include, but are not limited to, those associated with the Company's announced strategic plan, the ultimate terms of the reworked pharmacy distribution agreement, lease buyouts and the underlying assumptions and projections upon which they are based, as well as risks that intended results may not be achieved or may not occur as quickly as expected; general economic trends; changes in consumer demand or purchase patterns; delays or interruptions in the flow of merchandise between the Company's distribution centers and its stores or between the Company's suppliers and same; a disruption in the Company's data processing services; costs and delays in acquiring or developing new store sites; and the factors listed under "Risk Factors" in the Company's most recent Annual Report on Form 10-K and any subsequent quarterly filings on Form 10-Q filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Forward-looking statements speak only as of the date made. Fred's undertakes no obligation to release revisions to these forward-looking statements to reflect events or circumstances after the date hereof or to reflect the occurrence of unforeseen events, except as required to be reported under the rules and regulations of the Securities and Exchange Commission.