Quarterly Sales Strong at Circuit City

The company cites robust video merchandise sales.
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Consumer electronics retailer

Circuit City

(CC) - Get Report

posted a 6.4% increase in first-quarter same-store sales Friday, helped by strong video merchandise sales.

The company said total sales in the quarter ended May 31 increased 7% to $2.07 billion. Sales of video merchandise made up 42% of total sales in the first quarter, with information technology-related sales making up 33% of revenue.

Video category sales reflected an upper-single-digit same-store sales increase, driven by sales of new-technology televisions: digital televisions had double-digit growth and there was triple-digit growth in plasma and LCD televisions.

"The first quarter comparable store sales increase in part reflects the soft performance in last year's first quarter, when we produced our weakest comparable store sales performance of that year," said Chief Executive W. Alan McCollough. Same-store sales fell 10% in the first quarter of 2003.

Shares of Circuit City were moving up 19 cents, or 1.6%, at $12.44 in Friday morning trading.

Circuit City noted that on May 12, it completed the acquisition of a controlling interest in Canadian-based retailer

InterTAN

and that about $21.5 million of Circuit City's total sales were from InterTAN in the first quarter.

Beginning with the second quarter ending Aug. 31, Circuit City expects to report separate same-store sales results for its domestic and international segments. The company also will report consolidated same-store sales beginning in the second quarter next year.

Meanwhile, industry rival

Best Buy

(BBY) - Get Report

posted an 8.3% rise in first-quarter same-store sales Thursday and updated its first-quarter EPS guidance.

Best Buy expects first-quarter earnings at the midpoint of its previously announced 30 cents to 35 cents a share range. The analyst consensus is for 33 cents a share.

Additionally, the company said total sales in the quarter rose 17% to $5.47 billion.

Shares of Best Buy were moving up 70 cents, or 1.4%, at $52.71 in Friday trading.