Roundy's sales, profits fall in third quarter 2012

Company blames economic headwinds, but sees better performance in Chicago market

MILWAUKEE — The continued softness of the economy weighed down on sales and profits at Roundy's during third quarter 2012, the Midwestern supermarket chain said Friday.

The company reported sales of $973.6 million, a 0.3% decrease from third-quarter 2011, while profits were $8.8 million, down from $12.4 million last year. Roundy's operates 161 stores with 98 pharmacies under the Pick 'n Save, Rainbow, Copps, Metro Market and Mariano's banners in Wisconsin, Minnesota and Illinois.

"During the third quarter, our results continued to be negatively affected by the general weakness in the overall economy and increased competitive environment," Roundy's president, chairman and CEO Robert Mariano said. "We have worked very hard to strengthen our leading market position as a provider of quality, value and convenience to consumers, but the impact of increased price investments and promotional activities on our gross margins and profitability was greater than we anticipated."

Mariano said that customers did not respond as enthusiastically as last year to the company's Monopoly promotion program, which had contributed to the stronger results last year, though the chain's stores in the Chicago market continued performing well. "With eight Mariano's now open in the Chicago area, we are gaining significant traction and continue to invest in the growth of that market," Mariano said. "We believe that our continued focus on enhancing the execution of our overall business model will position us to deliver greater overall sales growth and profitability."

For the 39-week period ended Sept. 29, sales were $2.9 billion, a 1.2% increase over the $2.87 billion reported during the same period last year. Profits during the latest 39-week period were $38.3 million, compared with $38.9 million last year.

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