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11/18/2022

Natural Grocers Declares Record FY22, Mixed Q4

Company says last quarter is in line with expectations
Emily Crowe
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FY22 was the 19th consecutive year of positive comparable-store sales growth for Natural Grocers.

Natural Grocers by Vitamin Cottage Inc. is sharing its fourth quarter results for fiscal year 2022, ended Sept. 30, as well as full fiscal year results. While Q4 saw a mixed bag of numbers due to a post-pandemic increase in summer travel and more consumption of food away from home, the grocer reported a record FY22.

For Q4, year-over-year net sales increased 0.6% to $274.2 million and daily average comparable-store sales decreased 0.2%, but increased 15.8% on a three-year basis. Net income was $2.2 million, with diluted earnings per share of $0.09, and adjusted EBITDA was $13.6 million.

[Read more: "Natural Grocers Reveals Shopper Picks for Best Store-Brand Products"]

In terms of full-year results, net sales increased 3.2% to $1.1 billion year-over-year, daily average comparable-store sales increased 2.6%, net income was $21.4 million and adjusted EBITDA was $62.2 million. FY22 marks the 19th consecutive year of positive comparable-store sales growth for the company.

"The fourth quarter results were in-line with our expectations given the moderation of pandemic trends, including more normalized levels of summer travel and food-away-from-home consumption," said Kemper Isely, co-president. "We estimate that product cost inflation was approximately 7% for the fourth quarter and 5% for the fiscal year. Historically, our inflation rate has been more stable than conventional grocers due to our specialized supply chain. In the last year our inflation rate was lower than our peers, and did not contribute to our comparable-store sales to the same magnitude as our peers. We continue to pass along the impact of product cost inflation through pricing."

Continued Isely: "We had record results for the full year, achieving our previously announced guidance for daily average comparable-store sales growth and diluted earnings per share. Fiscal 2022 was our 19th consecutive year of positive daily average comparable-store sales growth. As we look forward to fiscal 2023, we remain focused on enhancing shareholder value by driving profitable growth, leveraging our differentiated model, emphasizing operational excellence, and executing to our founding principles."

Founded in 1955, Natural Grocers currently operates 164 stores in 21 states. The company is No. 95 on The PG 100, Progressive Grocer’s 2022 list of the top food and consumables retailers in North America.

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