Earnings

Costco Reports 90.6 Pct Spike In eCommerce Amid Pandemic

Costco Wholesale Corp. reported on Thursday (Sept. 24) that its eCommerce sales spiked 90.6 percent in its fourth quarter.

The wholesale club also reported an increase in U.S. comp sales of 11 percent, a rise in Canada comp sales of 9.1 percent and a bump in other international comp sales of 16.1 percent in Q4.

“We've enjoyed strong sales results during the June, July and August timeframe,” Costco Executive Vice President, Chief Financial Officer and Director Richard A. Galanti said in a call with analysts.

Amid the pandemic, Galanti said that the company also benefited from products for the home beyond food.

“As people are spending less on travel, air and hotel, and dining out, they seem to have redirected at least some of those dollars to categories like lawn and garden, furniture and mattresses, exercise equipment, bicycles, housewares, cookware … and the like,” Galanti said.

The executive also noted that some of the retailer’s ancillary businesses, particularly its optical and hearing aid operations, were shuttered for 12 to 16 weeks and opened again mid-summer.

Galanti said that in China most of the factories are up and running, judging from the shipments to the retailer in terms of a supply chain perspective. He did note that there are “some production challenges due to certain components downstream” in the supply chain.

For the quarter, the company reported membership fee income of $1.1 billion for the 16 weeks concluding Aug. 30 and $3.5 billion for the 52 weeks concluding Aug. 30.

As for its overall results, Costco reported net income of $1.4 billion ($3.13 per diluted share) on net sales of $52.28 billion. The results exceeded analyst estimates of $2.83 per share on $52.08 billion in revenue.

Costco runs 795 warehouses, with 552 in the U.S. and Puerto Rico. The firm also operates stores in a number of other countries including the United Kingdom, Canada and Japan.

Additionally, Costco runs online shopping websites in the U.S., U.K., Canada, Korea, Mexico, Japan, Taiwan and Australia.

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