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Family Dollar promotes Reiser as Bloom exits

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MATTHEWS, N.C. — Former chain drug executive Mike Bloom has stepped down from his most recent post as president and chief operating officer of Family Dollar Stores Inc.

The announcement of his departure came as Family Dollar reported its fiscal 2014 first quarter results. The company said a search will be conducted for his replacement.

“Since joining Family Dollar in 2011, Mike has been a valued part of our team,” company chairman and chief executive officer Howard Levine said in a statement. “We appreciate his contributions to the company and wish him all the best in his future endeavors.”

Bloom joined Family Dollar as president and chief operating officer in September 2011. Before that he served as executive vice president of merchandising, supply chain, marketing and advertising at CVS Caremark Corp., where he had a 20-year career.

Family Dollar also announced that it has promoted Jason Reiser to the position of executive vice president and chief merchandising officer, reporting to Levine.

Reiser joined Family Dollar last summer as senior vice president of merchandising, with responsibility for health, beauty, personal care and household products. In October he was promoted to lead merchandising officer with responsibility for all merchandising functions.

Reiser came to Family Dollar from Walmart, where he had spent 17 years, serving most recently as vice president of merchandising, health and family care for Sam’s Club.

“Continuing to refine our assortment to meet the needs of our customer is critical to being a compelling place to shop,” Levine said. “Jason’s proven leadership, merchandising experience and deep understanding of our customers position him well to ensure that we grow both customer trips and market share.”

Family Dollar’s results for the first quarter were slightly below analysts’ expectations. Sales for the quarter advanced 3.2% to $2.5 billion, but net income declined 2.8% to $78 million, or 68 cents per diluted share. Operating profit fell 5.2% to $120.3 million.

Comparable-store sales declined 2.9%. That was partly due to tough comparisons with strong gains in the prior-year period. But Family Dollar also saw declines in customer traffic and average transaction size. Gross margin was up 14 basis points, hitting 34.28%, but selling, general and administrative expenses grew 56 basis points to 29.46%.

Levine noted that sales and earnings for the quarter were in line with the company’s previously provided guidance.

“As expected, comparable-store sales were pressured as we anniversaried strong consumable sales growth last year. In addition, our core customers continued to face economic uncertainties, and the promotional environment intensified.”

William Blair & Co. analyst Mark Miller called the departure of Bloom and the lowered second quarter and full-year outlook bigger sources of concern than the company’s first quarter results.


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