Company lowers earnings guidance for the year
Revenue rose 4% to $26.6 billion, slightly below analysts’ forecasts. Excluding fuel sales, revenue rose 7.3% in the 13 weeks to August 13, Kroger noted.
The company lowered its guidance for the full year. It now expects per-share earnings for the year of between $2.10 and $2.20, compared with its previous forecast of between $2.19 and $2.28 per share.
“I’m very proud of our associates for their determined focus on always making a difference for our customers. Their execution of our Customer 1st Strategy in a deflationary environment helped deliver growth in identical-store sales, units and market share,” commented chairman and chief executive officer Rodney McMullen. “We are focused on long-term performance over a three- to five-year horizon. We have the right strategy, the right people and the financial flexibility to execute our strategy, which allows us to continue investing in our associates and our business and growing market share. By staying on our strategy, we create long-term value for our shareholders.”
Kroger’s long-term financial strategy is to use financial flexibility to drive growth while also returning capital to shareholders. Over the last year, Kroger has used free cash flow to repurchase $1.1 billion in common shares, pay $406 million in dividends, invest $3.8 billion in capital and acquire Roundy’s Inc. for $866 million.