Ingles has been using some of the sales growth during the pandemic to refinance and pay off debt.
North Carolina-based Ingles Markets is continuing to leverage sales growth from the pandemic into a stronger balance sheet despite higher operating expenses.
For the fourth quarter ended Sept. 25, net sales at Ingles increasd 11.6% to $1.34 billion. Net income totaled $71.7 million for quarter compared with $57.9 million for the September 2020 quarter. Basic and diluted earnings per share for Class A Common Stock were $3.86 and $3.78, respectively, compared with $2.94 and $2.86, respectively, for the prior year quarter.
"We had a successful year amidst ongoing difficulties caused by COVID-19. During this past year, we are thankful for our associates who continued to provide customers with needed products and services," said Robert P. Ingle II, chairman of the board.
Ingles has been using some of the sales growth during the pandemic to refinance and pay off debt. Ingles' total debt at the end of fiscal 2021 was $589.5 million compared with $605.5 million at the end of fiscal 2020. Interest expense declined as the company continues to reduce debt and refinance debt at lower rates over the past 12 months.
The company currently has the full amount available under its $150 million line of credit. Ingles says its financial resources, including the line of credit and other internal and anticipated external sources of funds, will be sufficient to meet planned capital expenditures, debt service and working capital requirements for the foreseeable future.
Operating and administrative expenses at Ingles totaled $248.9 million in fourth quarter compared with $236.8 million for the September 2020 quarter. Most of the increase was due to higher personnel costs incurred to support higher sales and additional safety measures related to the pandemic, the company said.
For the full fiscal year, net sales at Ingles totaled $4.99 billion, an increase of 8.2% compared with $4.61 billion for fiscal 2020. Net income totaled $249.7 million compared with $178.6 million for fiscal 2020. Basic and diluted earnings per share for Class A Common Stock were $13.06 and $12.73, respectively, for fiscal 2021 compared with $9.06 and $8.82, respectively, for fiscal 2020.
Operating and administrative expenses totaled $963.3 million in fiscal 2021 and $921.7 million in fiscal 2020.
Capital expenditures for fiscal 2021 totaled $140.6 million compared with $122.8 million for fiscal 2020. Capital expenditures for fiscal 2021 were focused on stores that opened this fiscal year as well as stores scheduled to open later. The company has not announced how many stores it opened in fiscal 2020 or how many it plans to open in fiscal 2022, if any.