BJ's Sees 37 Percent Profit Jump in Q2; Launches BJ's Visa Card

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BJ's Sees 37 Percent Profit Jump in Q2; Launches BJ's Visa Card

NATICK, Mass. -- Warehouse club operator BJ's Wholesale Club, Inc. yesterday posted a 37 percent increase in profit for the second quarter, citing strong sales of perishable foods like cheese and produce.

Its net income was $36.3 million, compared to $26.4 million in the second quarter of 2006.

Separately, the company announced a new partnership with Barclays to launch the BJ's Visa Card, which will be accepted as a customer's BJ's Membership Card.

Results for the second quarter of 2007 included income of $2.4 million post-tax from the disposition of a lease on one of the two ProFoods Restaurant Supply locations closed by the company in January 2007, as well as income of $3.6 million post-tax from favorable income tax audit settlements.

Total sales for the second quarter jumped 8.0 percent to $2.25 billion, compared with $2.08 billion for the second quarter of 2006. Comparable club sales increased by 3.7 percent for the latest period, including a contribution from sales of gasoline of 0.7 percent and a detriment from lack of pharmacy sales vs. last year worth approximately 0.4 percent.

BJ's said its new Visa Card will offer cardholders the following perks:
-- Two points for every dollar spent on eligible BJ's purchases
-- One point for every dollar spent on all other purchases
-- 1,000 bonus points after their initial purchase
-- For every 2,000 points accumulated, the cardholder automatically will receive with their monthly statement a $20 BJ's Bucks check, which can be used for BJ's purchases
-- The option to use their BJ's Visa Card as their BJ's Membership Card
-- Fast checkout with Visa payWave, Visa's contactless technology

Via Visa payWave technology, consumers will be able to pay for purchases by waving their contactless-enabled card within two inches of a secure card reader.

"Members shop at BJ's Wholesale Clubs for the quality products, selection, convenience, and overall value that a BJ's Membership brings to their lives, and we wanted to deliver that same brand experience with our BJ's Visa Card," said Ed Gillooly, e.v.p., chief marketing officer, BJ's Wholesale Club, in a statement.

Barclays said it plans to issue a business credit card for BJ's business members beginning in January 2008.

BJ's operates 175 BJ's Wholesale Clubs in 16 states.