Sears, Roebuck and Co. (NYSE: S) announced today that comparable domestic store revenues decreased 3.7 percent for the four weeks ended May 29, 2004. Total domestic store revenues were $2.08 billion for the four-week period in May 2004, down 4.7 percent compared with the four weeks ended May 31, 2003.
"The shift of Memorial Day to the June sales month from May in 2003, combined with a slackening in consumer demand across most categories, contributed to results below our expectations," said Sears Chairman and CEO Alan J. Lacy. "We continue to take significant steps to improve the shopability of our stores, including a systematic resetting of seven major departments this year. In May, we substantially upgraded our Home Fashions presentation, with better merchandise and fixturing in 300 stores."
Sears experienced sales declines in its home group categories, while the weakness in spring apparel revenues persisted. The company's off-the-mall formats collectively reported flat sales for the month of May.
Sears, Roebuck and Co. Domestic Store Revenues & Comparable Store Revenues (*According to National Retail Federation Fiscal Calendar.) (**A store is considered to be comparable at the beginning of the 13th month after the store is opened.) Fiscal Period Ending Percent Change May 29, May 31, All Comp 2004 2003 Stores Stores** May $2,078,900,000 $2,180,600,000 -4.7% -3.7% Year-to-Date* $8,129,600,000 $8,325,400,000 -2.4% -1.1%
The company has made available by phone a recorded message on sales performance of its domestic stores for May, as well as the company's forecasted comparable store sales for the 2004 second quarter. Based on April and May results, the company expects second quarter comparable store sales to range from flat to a slight decrease. The message can be heard by calling (847) 286-6111 and will be available for approximately one week.
The forecasted comparable store sales for the 2004 second quarter represents a "forward-looking statement," which is based on assumptions about the future that are subject to risks and uncertainties. Actual results may differ materially from the results projected in the forward-looking statement. Risks and uncertainties that may cause actual results to differ materially include competitive conditions in retail and related services industries; changes in consumer confidence and spending; the success of the full-line store strategy and other strategies; Sears' ability to integrate and operate Lands' End successfully; the successful integration of Sears' retail businesses with Citigroup's operation of the Credit and Financial Products business, which involves significant training and the integration of complex systems and processes; social and political conditions such as war, political unrest and terrorism or natural disasters; general economic conditions and normal business uncertainty. The company intends this forward-looking statement to speak only as of the time of this release and does not undertake to update or revise it as more information becomes available.
Sears, Roebuck and Co. is a leading broadline retailer providing merchandise and related services. With revenues in 2003 of $41.1 billion, the company offers its wide range of home merchandise, apparel and automotive products and services through more than 2,300 Sears-branded and affiliated stores in the U.S. and Canada, which includes approximately 870 full-line and 1,100 specialty stores in the U.S. Sears also offers a variety of merchandise and services through sears.com, landsend.com, and specialty catalogs. Sears is the only retailer where consumers can find each of the Kenmore, Craftsman, DieHard and Lands' End brands together -- among the most trusted and preferred brands in the U.S. The company is the largest provider of product repair services with more than 14 million services calls made annually.
SOURCE: Sears, Roebuck and Co.
CONTACT: Media, Edgar P. McDougal, +1-847-286-9669, or Investor, Scott A.
Bohaboy, +1-847-286-7419, both of Sears, Roebuck and Co.
Web site: http://www.sears.com/