CINCINNATI, Ohio Kroger reported that sales, including fuel, increased 8.7% to $24.8 billion in the first quarter of fiscal 2010 compared with $22.8 billion for the same period last year. Excluding fuel sales, total sales increased 3.1% in the first quarter, which ended May 22, over the same period last year. Identical-supermarket sales, without fuel, increased 2.4% in the first quarter over the same period last year.
Net earnings for the first quarter totaled $373.7 million, or 58 cents per diluted share. Net earnings in the same period last year were $435.1 million, or 66 cents per diluted share.
“I am pleased with the strong positive identical sales growth we achieved in the first quarter while striking a better balance on margin investments. Our Customer 1st strategy continues to deliver results through improvements in all four key areas we target: our people, our products, the overall shopping experience in our stores, and prices,” said David Dillon, Kroger’s chairman and chief executive officer. “As a result, the total number of families we serve continues to grow and our most loyal customers are buying more with us.”
Kroger confirmed its identical-supermarket sales and earnings guidance for fiscal 2010. The company said it continues to expect identical supermarket sales growth, excluding fuel, of 2% to 3% for the year. Net earnings are expected to range from $1.60 to $1.80 per diluted share for the year.