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Advance Auto Parts, Inc. Q2 2010 Earnings Call Transcript

Advance Auto Parts, Inc. Q2 2010 Earnings Call Transcript

Advance Auto Parts, Inc. (AAP)

Q2 2010 Earnings Call Transcript

August 12, 2010 10:15 am ET


Joshua Moore – Director, Finance and IR

Darren Jackson – CEO

Jim Wade – President

Kevin Freeland – COO

Mike Norona – EVP, CFO


Dan Wewer – Raymond James

Scot Ciccarelli – RBC Capital Markets

Allen Hatzimanolis – BB&T Capital Markets

Chris Horvers – JPMorgan

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Michael Lasser – Barclays Capital

Alan Rifkin – Bank of America

Gregory Melich – ISI

Ryan Brinkman – Goldman Sachs

Mark Mandel – ThinkEquity



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Welcome to the Advance Auto Parts second quarter 2010 conference call. Before we begin, Joshua Moore, Director of Finance and Investor Relations will make a brief statement concerning forward-looking statements that will be made on this call.

Joshua Moore

Good morning and thank you for joining us on today's call. I'd like to remind you that our comments today contain forward-looking statements we intend to be covered by and we claim the protection under the Safe Harbor provisions for forward-looking statements contained in the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995.

Forward-looking statements address future events, developments or results and typically use words such belief, anticipate, expect, intend, will, plan, forecast, outlook or estimate, and are subject to risks, uncertainties and assumptions that may cause our results to differ materially, including competitive pressures, demand for the company's products, the economy in general, consumer debt levels, dependence on foreign suppliers, the weather and other factors disclosed in the company's 10-K for fiscal year ended January 2, 2010 on file with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

The company intends these forward-looking statements to speak only as of the time of this conference call and does not undertake to update or revise them as more information becomes available. The reconciliation of any non-GAAP financial measures mentioned on the call with the corresponding GAAP measures are described in our earnings release and our SEC filings, which can be found on our website at

For planning purposes, our third quarter earnings release is scheduled for Wednesday, November 10, 2010, after market close, and our quarterly conference call is scheduled for the morning of Thursday, November 11, 2010.

To be notified of dates of future earnings reports, you can sign up through our Investor Relations section of our website. Finally, a replay of this call will be available on our website for one year.

Now, let me turn the call over to Darren Jackson, our CEO. Darren?

Darren Jackson

Thanks, Joshua. Good morning, everyone. Welcome to our second quarter conference call. First, I'd like to thank our 51,000 team members for delivering a record performance in our second quarter 2010. The team continues to position us for another great year with strong top line and bottom line results through their focus on execution and an unwavering commitment to serving our customers.

We remain confident in our team members and our strategies as they fueled the 6.9% increase in our year-to-date comp store sales. Our team continues to drive the resurgence of our DIY business, while extending the string of double digit comp store sales gains in our commercial business.

The favorable market conditions and successful execution of our key initiatives drove a 7.2% increase in total sales and a record store sales productivity that reached $1.64 million per store on a trailing four quarter basis.

Our availability excellence teams continue to shine by expanding our gross profit rate by over 100 basis points resulting in double digit operating income growth during the quarter. The 12% operating margins are a glimpse in the potential of our overall business. I'm encouraged by our continued improvement in our overall customer satisfaction scores achieved while delivering a record 16.5% return on invested capital.

Collectively the strategic and financial progress is evident in our customer experience and our bottom line results. Similar to the first quarter, we outperformed both our financial and strategic objectives during the second quarter 2010. We are pleased with the continued progress of the initiatives that we had previously shared with you Jim, Kevin, and Mike will provide updates on some of these initiatives later in the call.

Our team is the most important factor to Advance's success. Our highly engaged team members have a passion for serving our customers, and are committed to serving our customers better than anyone else. We continue to assess the engagement of our team through our team's calibration survey, and I'm encouraged that those scores continue to increase across the company.

Clearly, we are moving in the right direction. The economic landscape and our industry vital signs, such as more stable gas prices and miles driven along with the increase in average age of vehicles continue to be favorable and have fueled our market over the first half of the year.

These dynamics combined with our continued focus on select initiatives are helping us deliver strong results. Yet we are also aware that we will compete with back-to-school and the holiday shopping season for top spot on our customers' priority list in the back half of the year.

Overall, we are encouraged by our good start to the third quarter and are upbeat as we look to the second half of 2010. Our focus in the second half will remain on key initiatives including demand driven labor, the roll out of our B2B website, our commercial customer growth and retention programs, our B2C website and global sourcing. These initiatives continue to make a difference with our customers and to our bottom line.

Our confidence is tempered by the fact that our business has benefitted from extremely favorable weather conditions, in the first half of 2010. However, weather tends to even out over the course of the year. Additionally, consumer priorities will have an understandable impact, principally in Q4, due to the holiday shopping season.

I'd like to take a moment to recognize some members of our team who are driving great outcomes.

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