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Conn’s, Inc. Reports Record Net Income

Conn’s, Inc. (NASDAQ:CONN), a specialty retailer of furniture, mattresses, home appliances, consumer electronics and provider of consumer credit, today announced its financial results for the first quarter ended April 30, 2014.

First-quarter fiscal 2015 significant items include (on a year-over-year basis unless noted):

  • Consolidated revenues increased 33.6% to $335.4 million;
  • Same store sales grew 15.6%, on top of a 16.5% increase in same store sales reported a year ago;
  • Furniture and mattress sales increased 64.7% and accounted for approximately one-third of total product revenue in first-quarter fiscal 2015;
  • Entered Denver market with opening of two Conn’s HomePlus® stores;
  • Retail gross margin improved 110 basis points to 41.4%;
  • Adjusted retail segment operating income rose 44.8% to $39.5 million;
  • Credit segment operating income declined $0.4 million to $11.3 million;
  • The percentage of the customer portfolio balance 60+ days delinquent improved sequentially to 8.0% as of April 30;
  • Credit segment provision for bad debts on an annualized basis was 8.2% of the average outstanding portfolio balance;
  • Adjusted diluted earnings grew 31.1%, to $0.80 per share, from $0.61 per share; and
  • Full-year fiscal 2015 guidance of $3.40 to $3.70 adjusted earnings per diluted share was reaffirmed.

“First quarter results met our expectations with solid performance in both the retail and credit operations,” stated Theodore M. Wright, Conn’s chairman and chief executive officer. “Same store sales rose 16% over the prior year with same store sales growth of 3% in the electronics category. This growth continued into May with same store sales increasing 13%. With the expansion of our product offerings and new store openings, furniture and mattress was our leading product category in the quarter. This favorable shift in product mix contributed to retail gross margin of 41.4% for the period.

“We opened two Conn’s HomePlus stores in Colorado in late April, two stores in Tennessee in May and plan to open seven more stores by the end of July. For the full fiscal year, we continue to execute our plan to open 17 to 20 stores and expand our geographic footprint. All of our new stores are performing at or above our expectations. We incurred substantial costs related to these stores and the related distribution network during the quarter, which we expect to become better levered over the balance of the year.

“Execution in our collections operation improved during the quarter and delinquency declined as anticipated. We expect to see further execution improvement in the coming quarters.”

Retail Segment First-Quarter Results (on a year-over-year basis unless otherwise noted)

Total retail revenues increased $68.3 million, or 32.6% to $278.1 million for the quarter ended April 30, 2014. The revenue growth reflects the impact of the net addition of nine stores over the past 12 months as well as a 15.6% increase in same store sales. The company’s decision to discontinue sales of lower-margin lawn equipment in January reduced the reported year-over-year sales increase. Sales of lawn equipment were $4.8 million in the first quarter of fiscal 2014. After excluding lawn equipment, same store sales were up approximately 19%. With new store openings and the remodeling and relocation of existing stores, almost three-quarters of the stores were operating in the Conn’s HomePlus® format at May 31, 2014.

The following table presents net sales by category and changes in net sales for the current and prior-year quarter:

           
Three Months Ended April 30, Same store
2014   % of Total   2013   % of Total Change % Change   % change
(dollars in thousands)
Furniture and mattress $ 80,892 29.2 % $ 49,123 23.5 % $ 31,769 64.7

%

 

33.2

%

 

Home appliance 77,115 27.8 57,679 27.5 19,436 33.7 20.5
Consumer electronics 66,443 23.9 56,810 27.1 9,633 17.0 3.0
Home office 23,936 8.6 17,506 8.4 6,430 36.7 22.9
Other   5,834 2.1     9,742 4.7     (3,908 ) (40.1 ) (44.3 )
Product sales 254,220 91.6 190,860 91.2 63,360 33.2 15.4
 
Repair service
agreement commissions 20,254 7.3 15,989 7.6 4,265 26.7 16.7
Service revenues   3,155 1.1     2,599 1.2     556   21.4
Total net sales $ 277,629 100.0 % $ 209,448 100.0 % $ 68,181   32.6

%

 

15.6

%

 

 

The following provides a summary of items influencing Conn’s major product category performance during the quarter, compared to the prior-year period:

  • Furniture unit sales expanded 52% and the average selling price was up 15%;
  • Mattress unit volume grew 19% and the average selling price increased 14%;
  • Home appliance unit volume increased 21%. Laundry sales were up 35%, refrigeration sales rose 32% and cooking sales grew 23%;
  • Television sales rose 11% in total and declined 2% on a same store basis. Home theater and portable audio sales each grew 42%; and
  • Computer sales increased 60% and tablet sales declined 15%.

Retail gross margin increased 110 basis points to 41.4% for the quarter ended April 30, 2014. Certain of the company’s vendors provide higher promotional assistance in the first quarter of each fiscal year, which benefited retail gross margin by approximately 130 basis points in the current quarter and 150 basis points in the prior-year period. The year-over-year increase in retail gross margin is attributable to the significant growth in higher-margin furniture and mattress sales. Furniture and mattress sales contributed 31.8% of the total product sales and 42.4% of the total product gross profit in the current period. For the first quarter of fiscal 2015, home appliance accounted for 27.3% of total product gross profit, consumer electronics generated 21.6% of total product gross profit and home office contributed 5.6% of total product gross profit.

In connection with the planned opening of nine stores in the second quarter of fiscal 2015, the company incurred approximately $3.8 million in unlevered operating expenses. Approximately 55% of these costs are included in selling, general and administrative expenses, with the balance in cost of goods sold. This compares with approximately $0.6 million of similar expenses in the prior-year period.

Credit Segment First-Quarter Results (on a year-over-year basis unless otherwise noted)

Credit revenues increased 38.9%, to $57.4 million. The revenue growth was attributable to the increase in the average receivable portfolio balance outstanding. The customer portfolio balance equaled $1.1 billion at April 30, 2014, rising 42.7%, or $330.4 million from a year ago. The portfolio interest and fee income yield was 17.6% for the first quarter, down 40 basis points from the prior year, primarily as a result of increased provision for uncollectible interest and lower fee income. The portfolio yield was also influenced by an increase in short-term, no-interest customer receivables.

Provision for bad debts increased $8.4 million to $22.2 million for the first quarter. The annualized provision rate increased 90 basis points, to 8.2%, due to a 32.7% increase in loan originations and higher delinquency rates, as compared to the prior year. The percentage of the customer portfolio balance greater than 60-days delinquent was 8.0% as of April 30 and 7.8% as of May 31, which compares to 8.8% as of January 31, 2014.

Additional information on the credit portfolio and its performance may be found in the table included within this press release and in Conn’s Form 10-Q for the quarter ended April 30, 2014, to be filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

First-Quarter Net Income Results

For the quarter ended April 30, 2014, Conn’s reported net income of $0.77 per diluted share, which includes a pretax charge of $1.8 million associated with facility closures and lease terminations, compared to the prior-year quarter when the company reported net income of $0.61 per diluted share.

Capital and Liquidity

As of April 30, 2014, the company had $516.8 million of borrowings outstanding under its asset-based loan facility. The company had $183.8 million of immediately available borrowing capacity, with an additional $178.0 million that could become available upon increases in eligible inventory and customer receivable balances under the borrowing base.

Outlook and Guidance

Conn’s reaffirmed its fiscal year 2015 earnings guidance of $3.40 to $3.70 per diluted share on an adjusted basis. The company expects to generate diluted earnings per share of between $3.37 and $3.67 for the 12 months ended January 31, 2015, which includes charges of approximately $0.03 per diluted share associated with facility closures and lease terminations during the first quarter of fiscal 2015. The following assumptions were considered in developing the full-year guidance:

  • Same stores sales up 5% to 10%;
  • New store openings of 17 to 20;
  • Ten store closures;
  • Discontinued sales of lawn equipment;
  • Retail gross margin between 39.0% and 40.0%;
  • An increase in the credit portfolio balance;
  • Credit portfolio interest and fee yield of approximately 18.0%;
  • Credit segment provision for bad debts of between 8.0% to 10.0% of the average portfolio balance outstanding based on the same store sales and new store opening expectations presented above;
  • Selling, general and administrative expense of between 28.0% and 29.0% of total revenues; and
  • Diluted shares outstanding of approximately 37.4 million.

Conference Call Information

Conn’s will host a conference call and audio webcast on Monday, June 2, at 10 a.m. CT / 11 a.m. ET, to discuss its earnings and operating performance for the fiscal 2015 first quarter. A link to the live webcast, which will be archived for one year, and slides to be referred to during the call will be available at http://ir.Conns.com. Participants may also join the live call by dialing 877-754-5302 or 678-894-3020.

About Conn’s, Inc.

Conn’s is a specialty retailer currently operating 80 retail locations in Arizona, Colorado, Louisiana, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Tennessee and Texas. The company’s primary product categories include:

  • Furniture and mattress, including furniture and related accessories for the living room, dining room and bedroom, as well as both traditional and specialty mattresses;
  • Home appliance, including refrigerators, freezers, washers, dryers, dishwashers and ranges;
  • Consumer electronic, including LCD, LED, 3-D, Ultra HD and plasma televisions, Blu-ray players, home theater and video game products, digital cameras and portable audio equipment; and
  • Home office, including computers, tablets, printers and accessories.

Additionally, Conn’s offers a variety of products on a seasonal basis. Unlike many of its competitors, the company provides flexible in-house credit options for its customers in addition to third-party financing programs and third-party rent-to-own payment plans.

This press release contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 that involve risks and uncertainties. Such forward-looking statements include information concerning our future financial performance, business strategy, plans, goals and objectives. Statements containing the words "anticipate," "believe," "could," "estimate," "expect," "intend," "may," "plan," "project," "should," or the negative of such terms or other similar expressions are generally forward-looking in nature and not historical facts. Although we believe that the expectations, opinions, projections, and comments reflected in these forward-looking statements are reasonable, we can give no assurance that such statements will prove to be correct. A wide variety of potential risks, uncertainties, and other factors could materially affect our ability to achieve the results either expressed or implied by our forward-looking statements including, but not limited to: general economic conditions impacting our customers or potential customers; our ability to continue existing or to offer new customer financing programs; changes in the delinquency status of our credit portfolio; increased regulatory oversight; higher than anticipated net charge-offs in the credit portfolio; the success of our planned opening of new stores and the updating of existing stores; technological and market developments and sales trends for our major product offerings; our ability to protect against cyberattacks or data security breaches and to protect the integrity and security of individually identifiable data of our customers and our employees, our ability to fund our operations, capital expenditures, debt repayment and expansion from cash flows from operations, borrowings from our revolving credit facility, and proceeds from accessing debt or equity markets; and the other risks detailed in our SEC reports, including but not limited to, our Annual Report on Form 10-K for our fiscal year ended January 31, 2014. You are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements, which speak only as of the date of this press release. Except as required by law, we are not obligated to publicly release any revisions or update to these forward-looking statements to reflect events or circumstances after the date of this press release or to reflect the occurrence of unanticipated events.

     

CONN'S, INC. AND SUBSIDIARIES

CONDENSED, CONSOLIDATED STATEMENT OF OPERATIONS
(unaudited)
(in thousands, except per share amounts)
 
Three Months Ended
April 30,
2014 2013
Revenues
Total net sales $ 277,629 $ 209,448
Finance charges and other   57,819   41,615  

Total revenues

335,448

 

251,063
Cost and expenses
Cost of goods sold, including
warehousing and occupancy costs 160,782 123,457
Cost of parts sold, including
warehousing and occupancy costs 1,419 1,406
Selling, general and administrative expense 100,204 73,255
Provision for bad debts 22,258 13,937
Charges and credits   1,754   -  
Total cost and expenses   286,417

 

  212,055  
Operating income 49,031

 

39,008
Interest expense 4,724 3,871
Other income, net   -   (6 )
Income before income taxes 44,307 35,143
Provision for income taxes   15,838   12,967  
Net income $ 28,469 $ 22,176  
 
Earnings per share:
Basic $ 0.79 $ 0.63
Diluted $ 0.77 $ 0.61
Average common shares outstanding:
Basic 36,134 35,313
Diluted 36,925 36,452

     

CONN'S, INC. AND SUBSIDIARIES

CONDENSED RETAIL SEGMENT FINANCIAL INFORMATION
(unaudited)
(dollars in thousands)
 
Three Months Ended
April 30,
2014 2013
Revenues
Product sales $ 254,220 $ 190,860
Repair service agreement commissions 20,254 15,989
Service revenues   3,155     2,599  
Total net sales   277,629  

 

  209,448  
Finance charges and other   466     339  
Total revenues 278,095

 

209,787
Cost and expenses
Cost of goods sold, including
warehousing and occupancy costs 160,782 123,457
Cost of parts sold, including

warehousing and occupancy costs

1,419 1,406
Selling, general and administrative expense 76,330 57,510
Provision for bad debts 44 114
Charges and credits   1,754     -  
Total cost and expenses   240,329  

 

  182,487  
Operating income 37,766

 

27,300
Other income, net   -     (6 )
Income before income taxes $ 37,766  

 

$ 27,306  
 
Retail gross margin 41.4 % 40.3 %
Selling, general and administrative expense
as percent of revenues 27.4 % 27.4 %
Operating margin 13.6 % 13.0 %
 
Number of stores:
Beginning of period 79 68
Opened 2 2
Closed   (2 )   -  
End of period   79     70  

     

CONN'S, INC. AND SUBSIDIARIES

CONDENSED CREDIT SEGMENT FINANCIAL INFORMATION
(unaudited)
(dollars in thousands)
 
Three Months Ended
April 30,
2014 2013
Revenues
Finance charges and other $ 57,353 $ 41,276
Cost and expenses
Selling, general and administrative expense 23,874 15,745
Provision for bad debts   22,214     13,823  
Total cost and expenses   46,088  

 

  29,568  
Operating income 11,265

 

11,708
Interest expense   4,724     3,871  
Income before income taxes $ 6,541   $ 7,837  
 
Selling, general and administrative expense
as percent of revenues 41.6 % 38.1 %
Operating margin 19.6 % 28.4 %

     
CUSTOMER RECEIVABLE PORTFOLIO STATISTICS
(dollars in thousands, except average outstanding balance per account)
 
April 30,
2014 2013
 
Total outstanding balance $ 1,103,880 $ 773,436
Weighted average credit score of outstanding balances 591 596
Number of active accounts 631,795 486,988
Weighted average months since origination of outstanding balance 8.3 9.0
Average outstanding customer balance $ 1,747 $ 1,588
Account balances 60+ days past due $ 87,863 $ 51,543
Percent of balances 60+ days past due to total outstanding balance 8.0 % 6.7 %
Total account balances re-aged $ 128,329 $ 86,693
Percent of re-aged balances to total outstanding balance 11.6 % 11.2 %
Account balances re-aged more than six months $ 23,633 $ 19,172
Percent of total allowance for bad debts to total outstanding customer receivable balance 6.6 % 6.0 %
Percent of total outstanding balance represented by short-term, no-interest receivables 37.0 % 30.6 %
 
 
 
Three Months Ended
April 30,
2014 2013
Data for the periods ended:
Total applications processed 265,265 199,045
Weighted average origination credit score of
sales financed 605 602
Percent of total applications approved 48.0 % 50.2 %
Average down payment 4.2 % 3.9 %
Average income of credit customer at origination $ 38,400 $ 38,900
Average total outstanding balance $ 1,081,456 $ 753,221
Bad debt charge-offs (net of recoveries) $ 21,192 $ 11,555
Percent of bad debt charge-offs (net of recoveries)
to average outstanding balance, annualized 7.8 % 6.1 %
Weighted average monthly payment rate 5.8 % 6.2 %
Provision for bad debts $ 22,214 $ 13,823
Provision for bad debts as a percentage of average
outstanding balance 8.2 % 7.3 %
Percent of retail sales paid for by:
In-house financing, including down payment received 77.5 % 74.0 %
Third-party financing 11.1 % 11.8 %
Third-party rent-to-own options   4.2 %   3.8 %
Total   92.8 %   89.6 %

     

CONN'S, INC. AND SUBSIDIARIES

CONDENSED, CONSOLIDATED BALANCE SHEET
(unaudited)
(dollars in thousands)
 
 
April 30, January 31,
2014 2014
Assets
Current Assets
Cash and cash equivalents $ 4,193 $ 5,727
Customer accounts receivable, net 548,482 527,267
Other accounts receivable, net 52,679

 

51,480
Inventories 137,864 120,530
Deferred income taxes 22,482 20,284
Prepaid expenses and other assets   9,256   10,307
Total current assets 774,956

 

735,595
Long-term customer accounts receivable, net 470,233 457,413
Property and equipment, net 96,335 86,842
Deferred income taxes 8,879 7,721
Other assets, net   9,980   10,415
Total Assets $ 1,360,383

 

$ 1,297,986
 
Liabilities and Stockholders' Equity
Current Liabilities
Current portion of long-term debt $ 347 $ 420
Accounts payable 118,080 82,861
Accrued expenses 38,928 39,334
Other current liabilities   34,239   19,992
Total current liabilities 191,594

 

142,607
Long-term debt 517,358 535,631
Other long-term liabilities 32,058 30,458
Stockholders' equity   619,373   589,290
Total liabilities and stockholders' equity $ 1,360,383

 

$ 1,297,986

     
NON-GAAP RECONCILIATION OF RETAIL SEGMENT
OPERATING INCOME, AS ADJUSTED
(unaudited)
(dollars in thousands, except per share amounts)
 
Three Months Ended
April 30,
2014 2013
Operating income, as reported $ 37,766 $ 27,300
Adjustments:
Costs related to facility closures   1,754     -  
Operating income, as adjusted $ 39,520   $ 27,300  
 
Retail segment revenues $ 278,095 $ 209,787
 
Operating margin
As reported 13.6 % 13.0 %
As adjusted 14.2 % 13.0 %
     
NON-GAAP RECONCILIATION OF NET INCOME, AS ADJUSTED
AND DILUTED EARNINGS PER SHARE, AS ADJUSTED
(unaudited)
(in thousands, except per share amounts)
 
Three Months Ended
April 30,
2014 2013
Net income, as reported $ 28,469 $ 22,176
Adjustments:
Costs related to facility closures 1,754 -
Tax impact of adjustments   (621 )   -
Net income, as adjusted $ 29,602   $ 22,176
 
Average common shares outstanding - Diluted 36,925 36,452
 
Earnings per share - Diluted
As reported $ 0.77 $ 0.61
As adjusted $ 0.80 $ 0.61

     
NON-GAAP RECONCILIATION OF FULL-YEAR FISCAL 2015 PROJECTED
GUIDANCE FOR EARNINGS PER DILUTED SHARE TO
ADJUSTED EARNINGS PER DILUTED SHARE
(unaudited)
(dollars per share)
 
Low High
Estimated earnings per share, diluted (GAAP) $ 3.37 $ 3.67
Adjustments:
Facility closure costs incurred during the three months
ended April 30, 2014   0.03   0.03
Adjusted earnings per share, diluted (non-GAAP) $ 3.40 $ 3.70

Basis for presentation of non-GAAP disclosures:

To supplement the Company’s condensed consolidated financial statements, which are prepared and presented in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles ("GAAP"), the Company also provides the following information: adjusted net income and adjusted earnings per diluted share; adjusted retail segment operating income and adjusted operating margin; and full-year fiscal 2015 earnings guidance on an adjusted basis. These non-GAAP financial measures are not meant to be considered as a substitute for comparable GAAP measures but should be considered in addition to results presented in accordance with GAAP, and are intended to provide additional insight into the Company’s operations and the factors and trends affecting the Company’s business. The Company’s management believes these non-GAAP financial measures are useful to financial statement readers because (1) they allow for greater transparency with respect to key metrics the Company uses in its financial and operational decision making and (2) they are used by some of its institutional investors and the analyst community to help them analyze the Company’s operating results.

CONN-G

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