Bed Bath & Beyond's CEO Discusses Q4 2011 Results - Earnings Call Transcript

Bed Bath & Beyond (BBBY)

Q4 2011 Earnings Call

April 04, 2012 5:00 pm ET

Executives

Eugene A. Castagna - Chief Financial Officer, Principal Accounting Officer, Treasurer and President of Buy Buy Baby Inc

Warren Eisenberg - Co-Founder, Co-Chairman and Secretary

Steven H. Temares - Chief Executive Officer and Director

Presentation

Operator

Good day, and welcome to Bed Bath & Beyond's Fiscal 2011 Results Conference Call. [Operator Instructions] This call is being recorded. A rebroadcast of the conference will be available beginning on Wednesday, April 4 at 6:30 p.m. Eastern Time through 6:30 Eastern Time on Friday, April 6. To access the rebroadcast, you may dial (888) 203-1112 with the passcode of 8034583.

Now at this time, I'd like to turn the conference over to Mr. Gene Castagna, Chief Financial Officer and Treasurer of Bed Bath & Beyond. Please go ahead.

Eugene A. Castagna

Thank you, and good afternoon. Welcome to Bed Bath & Beyond's Fourth Quarter of Fiscal 2011 Conference Call. Within the past hour, we issued a press release announcing Bed Bath & Beyond's results for the 3- and 12-month periods ended February 25, 2012.

During this call, we will comment on some of the fourth quarter and full year highlights and provide our fiscal 2012 planning assumptions. Before proceeding, I will read the following statement and I quote, "Bed Bath & Beyond's fiscal fourth quarter press release and comments made during this call may contain forward-looking statements within the meaning of Section 21E of the Securities & Exchange Act of 1934 as amended. Many of these forward-looking statements can be identified by the use of words such as may, will, expect, anticipate, approximate, estimate, assume, continue, model, project, plan and similar words and phrases. The company's actual results and future financial condition may differ materially from those expressed in any such forward-looking statements as a result of many factors. Please refer to Bed Bath & Beyond's SEC filings, including its Form 10-K for the year ended February 26, 2011. The company does not undertake any obligation to update its forward-looking statements."

Joining me on today's call are Warren Eisenberg, Co-Chairman of Bed Bath & Beyond; and Steven Temares, Chief Executive Officer and Member of the Board of Directors.

I'm now very pleased to introduce Warren Eisenberg. Warren?

Warren Eisenberg

Thanks, Gene. Good afternoon. I'm pleased to report that our company's net earnings per diluted share increased approximately 32% in both the fiscal fourth quarter and the full year to approximately $1.48 and $4.06, respectively. We're pleased that we have been able to continue our strong performance in terms of earnings growth, cash flow generation and overall financial strength as we constantly challenge ourselves to improve in every aspect of our operation.

Our unique decentralized corporate culture continues to produce positive results, and we remain confident that our business will continue to grow successfully in the years ahead. Our entire organization is dedicated to providing our customers with the best possible shopping experience.

During the fourth quarter, we opened 3 buybuy BABY stores, bringing the total number of stores opened in fiscal 2011 to 38 stores across all our concepts, as well as relocated 3 Bed Bath & Beyond stores and closed one Harmon store.

Consolidated store space at February 25, 2012, is approximately 36.1 million square feet, an increase of approximately 3% over the end of last year's fourth quarter. Since the beginning of the fiscal first quarter of 2012, we've opened 2 additional Bed Bath & Beyond stores. Including these stores, we currently operate 1,175 stores, consisting of 995 Bed Bath & Beyond stores in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and Canada; 71 Christmas Tree Shop stores; 64 buybuy BABY stores and 45 stores under the names Harmon or Harmon Face Values.

In addition, we're a partner in a joint venture which operates 2 stores in the Mexico City market under the name Home & More.

During fiscal 2012, including the 2 additional stores we've opened to date, we anticipate opening a total of approximately 40 stores across all our concepts. Currently, we believe that fiscal 2012 mix of store openings by concept will be comparable to fiscal 2011. As the year progresses, the total number of stores that we will open will be updated as we gain greater visibility.

As always, we apply our stringent standards to growth as we evaluate new store sites, as well as continue to review our existing locations and lease terms for opportunities to relocate and/or right-size our stores in response to changing market conditions.

We believe that throughout the United States and Canada, there's an opportunity to operate an excess of 1,300 Bed Bath & Beyond stores, as well as continue to grow our Christmas Tree Shops and buybuy BABY concepts from coast to coast. Additionally, we will continue to open Harmon Face Values stores and place health and beauty care offerings in stores across all our concepts. We remain committed to and are excited about the continued growth of all our merchandise categories.

We're focused on increasing the productivity of our existing stores by evolving the merchandise offerings, as well as by expanding, renovating and/or relocating stores to enhance our customer shopping experience. Our ability to leverage the breadth and depth of our merchandise offerings, grow our bridal, baby and gift registries and continue the development of our interactive platforms has afforded us additional opportunities to attract new customers.

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