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Hooker Furniture Doubles Net Income On Higher Sales In Fiscal 2014 First Quarter

MARTINSVILLE, Va., June 4, 2013 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Hooker Furniture (Nasdaq:HOFT) today reported net sales of $56.3 million and net income of $2.1 million, or $0.20 per share, for its fiscal 2014 first quarter, which began on February 4, 2013 and ended May 5, 2013, compared to $1.0 million, or $0.09 per share, during last year's first quarter. The 108% increase in net income was driven by higher sales across all operating units, decreased product discounting for casegoods, and lower product costs and higher operating profitability for the domestic upholstery operations of Bradington-Young and Sam Moore.

Net sales for the first quarter increased $4.6 million, or 8.8%, compared to $51.7 million for the same period a year ago. Average selling prices increased in both the Company's segments, casegoods and upholstery, and were partially offset by lower unit volume in the Company's casegoods segment. The casegoods unit volume decline was primarily due to lower promotional discounting compared to the prior-year quarter.

"The improvements we saw in the second half of last year continued into this quarter with year-over-year increases in orders, shipments and profits for both the casegoods and upholstery segments," said Paul B. Toms Jr., chairman and chief executive officer. "We're trending in the right direction on multiple levels. Our upholstery segment had the best performance in the last several years this quarter and our casegoods segment is beginning to grow again. We believe our inventory levels are in the optimum range and retail conditions are stronger than in recent years," he added.

"We were able to more than double consolidated net profit while absorbing start-up costs associated with two new business ventures we are launching to expand our business beyond our core customer demographic and reach additional consumers on each end of the age spectrum," Toms said. "Our new Homeware product line, which is set to launch on two eCommerce websites in late summer, targets young Millenials in the early stages of their careers. The Homeware line features fresh, fashionable furnishings that are parcel delivery shippable and easily assembled in the home with an innovative, patented connector system requiring no tools. On the other end of the age spectrum, our new H Contract brand, launched in April, caters to retirees moving into senior living facilities, whose ranks are projected to triple in the next 20 years."

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