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Hibbett Sports strikes out in Q4


Weather related closures and tax refund delays hit Hibbett Sports hard in the fourth quarter, as the retailer posted a drop in same store sales.

For the fourth quarter and fiscal year ended Jan. 30, the sporting goods retailer said that same store sales decreased 0.6%. Net sales increased 2.7% to $245.7 million compared with $239.3 million in the prior year.Net income was $17.4 million compared with $19.9 million in the prior year quarter. Earnings per diluted share was 76 cents, compared with 79 cents in Q4 of 2015.

“We were very pleased with our holiday sales driven by improved assortments, new items, and improved replenishment capability," saidJeff Rosenthal, president and CEO. "Sales softened in January as we experienced significant weather related closures and delays in tax refunds. Looking forward, we are confident that our merchandising initiatives will continue to provide benefits as we enter the important spring season. Additionally, we are very excited with our hiring of a Vice President of Digital Commerce who will provide the leadership and guidance necessary to drive our ongoing omni-channel initiative.”

Net sales for the full year increased 3.2% to $943.1 million. Same store sales decreased 0.4%.

Looking ahead to fiscal 2016 the company expects an increase in same store sales in the low single digit range, and expects to open approximately 40 to 50 net new stores.

For the year, Hibbett opened 71 new stores, expanded 16 high performing stores and closed 15 underperforming stores, bringing the store base to 1,044 in 33 states as of Jan. 30.

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