Q2 results make 99 Cents Only an attractive buy

COMMERCE, Calif. — The investment group that agreed to buy 99 Cents Only Stores for $1.6 billion must be pleased with the discounter's second-quarter results.

99 Cents Only Stores reported total sales of $363 million for the second quarter, an increase of 8.8% over total sales of $333.6 million for the same quarter last year. Same-store sales for the quarter were up 6.7%. The number of same-store-sales transactions increased 4.7% and the average transaction size increased to $9.62 from $9.44, the company reported.

Eric Schiffer, CEO, commented, "We are pleased to report that we achieved 6.7% same-store sales growth in the second quarter, which was above our expected range of low single digit comparable sales.  We believe these results underscore the strength of our business model. We have now raised our comparable sales expectations for the full year to mid-single digits." 

During the second quarter of fiscal 2012, the company opened two stores in Southern California and one in Nevada. The gross and saleable retail square footage at the end of the second quarter each increased 3% over last year to 6.11 million and 4.8 million, respectively, based on 288 stores.

99 Cents Only Stores said in an earlier announcement that it has agreed to be acquired by a group of investors including its founding family, Ares Management and Canadian Pension Plan Investment Board for $1.6 billion in cash.

The announcement ends a months-long sales process, which started with a takeover offer from Leonard Green & Partners in March.