General and administrative expenses in the quarter decreased $0.7 million to $15.1 million from $15.8 million in the second quarter of the prior year, primarily due to a decrease in fees and expenses related to the refinancing of our credit facility in the second quarter of fiscal 2013 and in management fees, partially offset by an increase in equity compensation charges and public company costs of $2.8 million and $0.4 million, respectively.
Central Services, a component of general and administrative expenses that directly relates to the operations of our business, increased approximately $1.0 million, or 13.5%, in the second quarter of fiscal 2014 to $8.8 million from $7.8 million in the second quarter of the prior year. The increase is primarily due to an increase in public company costs of approximately $0.4 million and the continued investments in management, information technology systems, infrastructure, marketing and compliance to support the continued execution of our growth. Central Services, as a percentage of sales remained flat for the quarter at 4.8% and excluding public company costs, declined 30 basis points to 4.5%.
The following table sets forth a reconciliation to Central Services from General and Administrative expenses:
|Central Services Reconciliation ($ in millions, % of net sales)|
|Quarter Ended:||September 30, 2012||September 29, 2013|
|General & Administrative||$ 15.8||9.8%||$ 15.1||8.2%|
|(-) Transaction expenses||2.8||1.7%||-||0.0%|
|(-) Transaction bonuses||1.0||0.6%||-||0.0%|
|(-) Management fees||0.7||0.4%||-||0.0%|
|(-) Non-recurring expenses||1.3||0.8%||1.4||0.8%|
|(-) Corporate depreciation & amortization||1.1||0.7%||1.1||0.6%|
|(-) Equity compensation charge||0.0||0.0%||2.8||1.5%|
|(-) Pre-opening advertising||1.1||0.7%||1.0||0.6%|
|Central Services||$ 7.8||4.8%||$ 8.8||4.8%|
Store-opening costs in the second quarter included approximately $1.9 million for our Chelsea location which opened in July 2013 and $2.0 million for the Nanuet, New York location which opened in October 2013. Total store opening costs decreased to $3.9 million from $5.5 million in the second quarter of the prior year. In addition, the Company incurred $1.3 million of start-up costs for the new production center. Approximately $1.4 million and $0.7 million of store opening and production center start-up costs in the second quarter of fiscal 2014 and in the second quarter of fiscal 2013, respectively, were non-cash charges primarily due to deferred rent.