Fred’s February Fantastic
By George Anderson
Fred’s has reported company sales including franchised locations increased 19% (company owned stores 20%) and comparable store performance was up 6.2% for February over last year’s results.
Michael Hayes, chief executive officer, said in a company release, “Our 6.2%
increase in comparable stores sales for February was especially significant
in light of the month’s unusually harsh weather, with snow and ice disrupting
pharmacy business in several markets and hampering seasonal departments such
as lawn and garden and spring apparel. Despite the unusual weather pattern,
we got a jump on our new store development program for the year with the opening
of 10 stores in February and seven more on the first day of March all
tightly integrated with the upcoming completion of our second distribution center.”
Moderator’s Comment: What makes Fred’s successful?
Does it present a clear point of differentiation from its retail competitors?
Fred’s continues on an aggressive expansion path. The
chain plans to open 71 stores this year and to have 800 stores and 550 pharmacies
operating by the end of 2005. [George
Anderson – Moderator]