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E-commerce growth helps offset declining store revenue for Pep Boys

April 17, 2015 05:10 PM
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A 65% growth in online sales helped offset declining revenue elsewhere for auto parts retail chain Pep Boys.

In its Q4 earnings report filed earlier this week, Pep Boys reported net revenue of $2.085 billion, up 0.9% from $2.067 billion in fiscal 2014. The retailer, No. 184 in the just-released Internet Retailer 2015 Top 500 Guide, does not break out online sales in its earnings report. But the company tells Internet Retailer it generated $165 million in online sales in 2014, up from $100 million in 2013, an increase of $65 million, or 65%. Without the online gain, the company’s net revenue would have declined $47 million, instead of increasing by $18 million.

According to a transcript of the retailer’s Q4 2014 earnings call obtained from Seeking Alpha, chief financial officer David Stern said online sales increased 43% year over year for the quarter, though he did not give a dollar figure.

Interim CEO John Sweetwood told analysts that digital remains a priority for the company in fiscal 2015 as it looks to reach more online shoppers.

“We’ve partnered with third-party marketplaces for both product sales and service business,” he said. “We’re also not only making service appointments easier by offering them online through our website but are sourcing a significant part of that business from customers new to Pep Boys, and each day more of our capabilities are mobile-enabled.”

With over half of the traffic to its website coming via mobile devices, Pep Boys had previously told Internet Retailer it was planning on incorporating Apple Pay into its retail locations in 2015, though executives haven’t specified a timeline as to when that will happen.

Sweetwood also told analysts that the company is close to hiring a permanent CEO, though he didn’t say when or name candidates. Sweetwood took over as interim CEO in September following Mike Odell’s resignation.

For the fiscal year 2014 ending Jan. 31, Pep Boys reports:

  • Merchandise sales of $1.594 billion, down 0.9% from $1.609 billion in fiscal 2013.
  • Comparable retail sales down 1.9%.
  • Net loss of $27.3 million compared with a $6.9 million gain in the year-ago period.

For the fourth quarter, Pep Boys reports:

  • Net revenue of $502.4 million, up 1.4% from $495.7 million during the same period last year.
  • Merchandise sales of $385.1 million, up slightly from $384.9 million during the same period last year.
  • Comparable retail sales down 1.0%.
  • Net loss of $26.7 million compared with a $3.3 million loss in the year-ago quarter.
 

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