Dollar General 1Q15 Earnings Call Notes

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New CEO incoming

” Last week we had very exciting news announcing that Todd Vasos would be the next CEO of Dollar General. Todd will be an excellent CEO and I believe a great future lies ahead for Dollar General under his leadership.”

West coast port drag not too bad

“In the first quarter the negative financial impact from the West Coast port slow down was not as great as we anticipated. Due to the diligent work across both our supply chain and merchandizing teams, we successfully mitigated the expected drag to sales and gross margin we had projected at the time of the fourth quarter call.”

Low gas prices are good but our core customer is still struggling

“while this is encouraging news, our core customers are still struggling to stretch their household budget. Historically, our core customer is often a first to feel the negative effects when the economy weakens, and she lags a benefiting from improvements in the economy.”

We’ll have expansion but comps will get tougher

“we’re fairly confident that we will have expansion for the year but as we continue to move throughout the year, the compares get a little tougher to last year and that rate of growth with gross margin will subside somewhat as we continue to move but we feel pretty confident that we will have expansion as we move through the rest of the year.”

retail environment pretty rational

“he macro environment out there in retail, it’s always very competitive but I think the best way to still characterize it is it’s been rational across all channels of trade, mass grocery and drug.”

Our customer has to have prolonged confidence

“I think the way to look at it is that she also has to feel confident over a longer period of time and I think as we continue to move through the year and if everything stays where it’s at or gets a little bit better her confidence level is going to build and her spending will probably build with that because again, she doesn’t have a lot of disposable income.”

hallmark of a great retailer is driving productivity at the store level

“as it relates to the wages, we’re continuing to monitor that, we monitor everything out there at retail and wages are no different. But keep in mind, we still have a lot of flexibility and the real hallmark of a great retailer is the ability to drive productivity at store level and we will continue to do that”