WATSONVILLE, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Feb. 4, 2004--West Marine,
Inc. (Nasdaq:WMAR) today reported that net sales for the four weeks
ended January 31, 2004 were $31.4 million, a 28.2% increase from net
sales of $24.5 million for the four week period a year ago. Comparable
store net sales for January increased 15.3% compared to the same
period a year ago. Sales from 62 BoatU.S. stores acquired in January
2003 from Boat America are included in total sales, but are not
reflected in comparable store sales statistics.
John Edmondson, CEO of West Marine, said, "We are very pleased
with our January comparable store sales increase. Our sales
strengthened throughout the month. However, due to changes in our
promotional calendar, we believe some sales may have shifted into
January from February. In light of that, and because January 2003
sales represented only about 22% of total first quarter sales last
year, we remain comfortable with our previous first quarter guidance
of sales ranging from $126 million to $128 million and a loss per
share ranging from ($0.19) to ($0.17).
"Electronics sales were very strong in January, increasing by 23%
over last year in our comparable sales stores. Comparable store sales
by region for January 2004 were as follows: Northeast 29.3%, Southeast
17.2% and West Coast 8.1%."
West Marine, Inc. is the nation's largest specialty retailer of
boating supplies and apparel, with 346 stores in 38 states, Canada and
Puerto Rico, and more than $650 million in annual sales. The Company's
successful Catalog and Internet channels offer customers approximately
50,000 products -- far more than any competitor -- and the convenience
of being able to exchange Catalog and Internet purchases at its retail
stores. The Company's Port Supply division is the country's largest
wholesale distributor of marine equipment serving boat manufacturers,
marine services, commercial vessel operators and government agencies.
Because the overwhelming majority of West Marine's revenues come from
aftermarket sales, the Company has traditionally been less affected by
economic downturns than manufacturers and sellers of new boats.
Special Note Regarding Forward-Looking Statements
This press release includes "forward-looking statements" within
the meaning of Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934.
These forward-looking statements include, among other things,
statements that relate to West Marine's future plans, expectations,
objectives, performance, and similar projections, as well as facts and
assumptions underlying these statements or projections. Actual results
may differ materially from the results expressed or implied in these
forward-looking statements due to various risks, uncertainties or
other factors. Risks and uncertainties include the Company's ability
to increase sales at its existing stores and expand through the
opening of new stores, competitive pricing pressures, inventory
management and shrink issues, the market share erosion faced by the
Company's Catalog division as West Marine and its competitors open new
stores, the impact of the Internet on the supply chain,
weather-related issues, the level of consumer spending on recreational
water sports and boating supplies, and other risk factors described
from time to time in West Marine's filings with the Securities and
Exchange Commission, including West Marine's Annual Report on Form
10-K for the year ended December 28, 2002 and quarterly report on Form
10-Q for the period ended September 27, 2003. West Marine assumes no
responsibility to update any forward-looking statements as a result of
new information, future events or otherwise.
CONTACT: West Marine, Inc.
Eric Nelson, 831-761-4489
Russell Solt, 831-761-4229
SOURCE: West Marine, Inc.