A&P shifts focus to new initiatives as third-quarter sales drop

MONTVALE, N.J. Battling a challenging food retail market, A&P is changing its go-to-market direction and working on a number of initiatives to provide customers with better value, service and quality products. The news came as the grocer posted a drop in third-quarter same-store sales and a wider loss from continuing operations.

"Since assuming the role of interim CEO, I have launched efforts to assess all aspects of our business and to develop initiatives to improve our performance in the short term. During this important process, we have been fully engaged with Yucaipa and have leveraged their significant skills and industry expertise," stated Christian Haub, executive chairman of the board. "We have determined that our previous merchandising and marketing programs did not meet the consumer's changing needs."

He noted that the quarter "marks the transition to a different approach," and he helps improved performance in the coming months.

Sales for the third quarter ended Dec. 5 totaled $2 billion versus $2.1 billion last year. Same-store sales decreased 5.8%.

Reported loss from continuing operations was $502.4 million, which includes charges of $412.6 million for goodwill, trademark and long-lived asset impairment, and $16 million for adjustments related to financial liabilities.

Loss from continuing operations in the comparable period of the prior year totaled $3.8 million, and included income of $23 million for adjustments related to financial liabilities.

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