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The Fresh Market's CEO Discusses Q2 2012 Results - Earnings Call Transcript

Now, I'll turn the call over to Lisa, who will provide additional details on our financial results.

Lisa Klinger

Thank you, Craig. First, I would like to point out that there were several items that impact the comparability of our quarterly results and those items should be reviewed by investors in order to assess the company’s ongoing operations on a comparable basis. These items were described in detail in our press release and include the transaction expenses related to the equity offering during the second quarter as well as the transaction expenses incurred in the first quarter of fiscal 2011 and the net settlement payments made and received in connection with two resolved legal matters.

For the second quarter, net income increased $2.8 million to $13.3 million from $10.5 million for the second quarter of fiscal 2011. Diluted earnings per share increased 26.4% to $0.28 per share. For the first half, net income increased 35.9% to $32.6 million with diluted earnings per share of $0.68. As Craig highlighted earlier, the company had total net sales growth of 20.6% and comparable store sales growth of 8% for the quarter.

The comp sales increased resulted from a 5.3 percentage point increase in transaction and a 2.5 percentage point increase in average transaction size. The increase in transaction size was primarily driven by increases in average unit retail as a result of passing through cost inflation offset somewhat by the mix effects of lower AUR categories growing faster than a store. We also continue to see the growth of our larger basket transactions outpace the growth of smaller basket transactions as our loyal customers bought more items and spent more per visit.

It is important to note that our second quarter 2011 comparable sales growth of 4.6% was driven by one percentage point increase in transactions and a 3.6 percentage point increase in average transaction size. So, on a two-year stacked basis, our comparable sales have increased to 12.6% driven by a healthy balance of a 6.3 percentage point increase in transactions and a 6.3 percentage point increase in transaction size. In addition to the strong comparable sales growth nearly 21% total sales growth performance was also attributable to a strong new store productivity level of nearly 93% highlighting our ability to continue to grow and enter new markets and states with success. As all five new store performed in line or better with the company’s forecast.

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