Planet Organic Sees Q1 Sales Rise 26 Percent

EDMONTON, Alberta, Canada -- Natural and organic foods retailer/distributor Planet Organic Health Corp. here said sales increased 26.1 percent for the 13-week quarter ended March 31, a result of the company's aggressive expansion among its manufacturing, retail, and distribution divisions.

The Planet Organic Markets division -- consisting of the company's retail food stores, showed a 34.7 percent increase in same-store sales growth for the period. Revenues increased to $7.2 million, compared to $5.4 million in the same period last year. Planet Organic plans to open a second store in Calgary, Alberta and its first Ontario market store located in Port Credit. Both locations will open early fall.

"I am very pleased by the same store sales," said Mark Craft, Planet Organic president and co-founder. "It shows that we are delivering to customers what they expect of us -- fresh organic and natural foods, healthy living products, plus great customer service."

Sales overall for the quarter were $10.1 million compared to $8 million for the same period last year. Sales for the 9-month period were $27.7 million compared to $18.7 million, an increase of 48.2 percent.

Sangster's Health Centers, a division of Planet Organic that focuses on vitamins and health products, saw a sales increase of 54.4 percent to $4.1 million, compared to $2.7 million in the same period last year. This gain was driven by the acquisition of the Newfound Health chain. Same-store sales growth increased 0.30 percent compared to the last year.

Revenues not including corporate stores were $1.0 million, up 2.86 percent for the period while revenues including corporate stores were down 0.68 percent. This decrease in revenues with corporate stores is due to the conversion of a corporate store into a franchised store whereby the net revenues are replaced by franchise fees and distribution income. System sales are net sales from all corporate and franchised stores. Revenues include franchise fees and distribution income from all Sangster locations.

"The acquisition of Newfound Health continues to be a great addition to our division," said Roy Sangster, president of Sangster's.

Trophic Canada, the company's nutritional supplements manufacturing division, increased its net sales by 22.2 percent to $1.8 million, compared to last year's $1.4 million.
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