West Marine’s Q4 sales up slightly

WATSONVILLE, Calif. — West Marine Inc. earned net revenues of $104.2 million for its 13-week 2009 fiscal fourth quarter, which ended Jan. 2, according to a recent release from the company.

The company said if adjusted to remove the impact of an extra week in the 2008 fiscal fourth quarter, 2009 fiscal fourth quarter net revenues increased by $1.7 million, or 1.7 percent, and adjusted comparable store sales increased by $2.6 million, or 3.2 percent, over last year.

Without the adjustment, net revenues decreased by $6.9 million, or 6.2 percent, to net revenues of $104.2 million and comparable store sales decreased by $4.3 million, or 4.8 percent.

Stores opened during fourth quarter 2008 and fiscal year 2009 increased net revenues by $4.6 million versus last year. However, the impact of stores closed during fourth quarter 2008 and fiscal year 2009 reduced net revenues by $4.4 million.

“It’s certainly noteworthy that despite the still-difficult market environment, when you evaluate the reporting periods so that both 2008 and 2009 are based on the same number of weeks, we’ve achieved two consecutive quarters of comparable store and overall company growth,” Geoff Eisenberg, West Marine CEO, said in the release. “As was the trend throughout 2009, our revenues exceeded our internal expectations, which we attribute not only to the efforts of our teams of associates and the success of many of our operating strategies, but also to an improvement in the levels of boating usage in many markets.”

Net revenues for the 52 weeks ended Jan. 2 were $588.7 million, a decrease of $42.6 million, or 6.7 percent, from net revenues of $631.3 million for the 53 weeks ended Jan. 3, 2009, primarily due to a decline of 3.6 percent, or $18.7 million, in comparable store sales. There was a further decrease of $27.1 million from store closures during fiscal year 2009, partly offset by $18.4 million of net revenues generated by new stores. Adjusted to remove the impact of the extra week in fiscal year 2008, fiscal year 2009 net revenues would have decreased by $36.5 million, or 5.8 percent, and comparable store sales would have decreased by $13.6 million, or 2.7 percent, versus last year.

“We are pleased with our 2009 net revenues, especially when adjusting for the extra week of sales in 2008,” Eisenberg said. “The second half of the year was better for us than the first half, and that gives us more confidence in the boating products market as we move into 2010.”

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