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 AutoZone’s Q4 income, sales top estimates; store growth continues

AutoZone opened 118 new stores in the U.S. during its fiscal year, ended Aug. 27.

AutoZone closed the books on a strong year, driven by increased momentum in its commercial business.

The nation’s largest auto parts retailer reported that its net income rose to $810.0 million, or $40.51 a share, in the quarter ended Aug. 27, from $785.8 million, or $35.72 a share, in the year-ago period.

Analysts had expected earnings of $38.51 per share.

Net sales increased 8.9% to $5.35 billion, topping estimates of $5.16 billion. AutoZone’s commercial sales rose 22%. Same-store sales rose 6.2%.

The company repurchased $1 billion worth of its shares during the quarter, which represents about 2.4% of AutoZone's market capitalization of $42.20 billio

“Our retail business performed well this quarter ending with positive same store sales on top of last year’s strong performance. said Bill Rhodes, chairman, president and CEO. “And, our commercial business growth continued to be exceptionally strong at 22%. The investments we have made in both inventory availability and technology are enhancing our competitive positioning.  We are optimistic about our growth prospects heading into our new fiscal year.” 

For the fiscal year ended August 27, sales rose 11.1% to $16.3 billion, while domestic same-store sales were up 8.4%. Net income increased 11.9% to $2.4 billion and diluted earnings per share increased 23.1% to $117.19 from $95.19.

During the year, AutoZone opened 118 new stores in the Unied States, 39 stores in Mexico and 20 locations in Brazil.

As of August 27, the company had 6,168 stores in the U.S., 703 in Mexico and 72 in Brazil for a total store count of 6,943.

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