Haverty Furniture Companies Inc. (NYSE:HVT.A) Q1 2017 Earnings Conference Call - Final Transcript

May 02, 2017 • 10:00 am ET

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Haverty Furniture Companies Inc. (NYSE:HVT.A) Q1 2017 Earnings Conference Call - Final Transcript

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Presentation
Operator
Operator

Good day, and welcome to the Haverty's First Quarter 2017 Financial Results Conference Call. [Operator Instructions]

At this time, I'd like to turn the conference over to Mr. Dennis Fink, Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer. Please go ahead, sir.

Executive
Dennis Fink

Thank you, operator. During this conference call, we'll make forward-looking statements, which are subject to risks and uncertainties. Actual results may differ materially from those made or implied in such statements, which speak only as of the date they are made and which we undertake no obligation to publicly update or revise. Factors that could cause actual results to differ, include economic and competitive conditions and other uncertainties detailed in the Company's reports filed with the SEC.

Our President, CEO and Chairman, Clarence Smith, will now give you an update on our results and some insights about our direction plans.

Executive
Clarence Smith

Thanks Dennis. Thanks for joining our 2017 first quarter conference call. We're pleased to report a solid first-quarter performance. Net sales increased 3% to $200.4 million with comparable store sales up 1.6%. Total written sales were up 2.5% with written comp store sales up 1%.

Net income was $5.98 million versus $4.76 million last year. Earnings per share for Q1 were $0.28 compared to $0.21 per share last year. We had an increase in gross profit margin of 54.7% in Q1 up 100 basis points compared to 53.7% in 2016. Along with reduced ocean freight, we had strong execution with pricing and promotion and reduced markdowns due to better handling and lower closeouts in the line. Our Haverty's branded merchandise continues to demonstrate a strong value as well as a desirable fashion statement to our customer.

Total delivered sales for the second quarter to-date 2017 are up 2.2%, while comp store sales up 1.3%. In order to equalize the impact of Easter on our sales, we believe that the appropriate comparison for written sales includes the last week of March plus the month of April, which shows sales up 2% for the same period with comparable store sales up 0.9%.

We're in the midst of opening some exciting new stores, relocations, major remodeling projects, system upgrades and a major warehouse expansion. In the first quarter, we moved back into a completely rebuilt and spectacular new store in Lubbock, Texas. The Lubbock revival was like a Phoenix rising from the Ashes and resulted in what we now believe is the best-looking store in Texas.

We have for years wanted to find a store in Winston-Salem's bigger sister city. Last weekend, we fulfilled that need and opened a new store in Greensboro, North Carolina. In one of the more creative projects we've taken on, we will relocate to a new store in the Columbiana Mall Area of Columbia, South Carolina. This two-story store is another long-desired repositioning strategy that will come to fruition and help us better serve and reach our customer in that key city.

We also have four major remodeling projects underway that we plan to complete by early in