The retail pharmacy chain on Thursday posted stronger-than-expected fiscal second-quarter sales as consumers continued to fill prescriptions and scoop up other essentials amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.
It also gave a rosy forecast amid what it expects to be strong demand for the flu shot, and ongoing demand for medications and other health-related products.
Rite Aid said adjusted net income from continuing operations rose to $13.5 million, or 25 cents a share, vs. a loss of $78.7 million, or $1.48 a share, in the comparable year-ago quarter. Analysts polled by FactSet had been expecting earnings of 1 cent a share.
Sales, however, came in at $5.98 billion, up 11% year-over-year and well above analysts’ above estimates of $5.75 billion.
Looking forward, strong demand for flu shots, continued improvement in what it calls “pharmacy network management” and additional cost-savings efforts should help bolster both revenue and adjusted earnings before income, taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA), the company said.
For fiscal 2021, Rite Aid expects to post an adjusted net loss of between $190 million and $140 million and adjusted EBITDA of between $475 million and $525 million. On a per-share basis, the pharmacy chain is expecting to lose as much as 67 cents a share, or earn as much as 9 cents.
Same-store sales are expected to grow in the range of 3% to 4%, while overall sales are expected to ring in between $23.5 billion and $24 billion.