Staples Announces Fourth Quarter and Full Year 2011 Performance
This morning, Framingham, Massachusetts-based Staples Inc. announced the company's fourth quarter and full year 2011 fiscal results. For the full year, the company saw over $25 billion in sales, a $500 million increase over 2010. Fourth quarter sales were basically flat, $6.46 billion for the period ended January 28, 2012 versus $6.42 billion for the same period last year.
"During 2011 Staples celebrated its 25th anniversary with $25 billion in total company sales," said Ron Sargent, chairman and chief executive officer of Staples. "We drove strong earnings growth, generated more than $1 billion of free cash flow for the fourth consecutive year, and have solid plans in place to build on our momentum in 2012."
Staples Inc. divides its business into three categories: North American Delivery, North American Retail and International Operations.
North American Delivery, which includes Staples Advantage, parent of Staples Promotional Products and Staples Print Solutions, reported a two percent increase in both quarterly and full-year sales. Forth quarter sales for the segment were $2.5 billion, and were $10.1 billion for the year. The retail division also saw quarterly and annual increases of three and one percent, respectively. Combined the North American segments account for roughly 80 percent of the company's revenue
The International Operations division of Staples Inc. was the only segment to see a downturn in 2011, with a five percent decrease in the fourth quarter and sales of $1.3 billion. The drop "primarily reflects deleverage of distribution and delivery expense, as well as deleverage of rent expense on lower sales in European Retail, partially offset by lower marketing expense," the company said. Full year sales were up three percent, to $5.3 billion.
Although the company maintained positive cash flow and sales last year, it predicted slow growth for 2012, with full-year sales to increase in the low single digits due to declining demand in Europe.