Whole Foods 1Q13 Earnings Call Notes

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This post is part of a series of posts called “Company Notes.” These posts contain quotes and exhibits from earnings calls, conference presentations, analyst days and SEC filings. The quotes are generally pieces of information that I find interesting or helpful to understanding the company, industry or economy and are not meant to provide summaries of the full content of the call. Other posts in this series can be found by clicking here. Full transcripts can be found at Seeking Alpha.

$WFM Earnings Call Notes

“Each week close to seven million customers visit our 349 stores in 40 states and three countries’

“We have got significant leverage opportunities ahead for us in that regional structure that you will begin to see those to trends line over the next. So you are beginning to see it. You will probably see it continue for many years to come. Probably the one area we need to make additional capital investment from an infrastructure standpoint is going to be in our IT. We see that’s a real opportunity for us and its going to require additional capital. But pretty much most of our infrastructure has significant leverage opportunities and we anticipate reaping that for years to come.”

“the cohort of stores between five and years old, which have been all actually lagers and that’s reversed in South as we predicted it would. As these stores get a little bit older, they are still coping very strongly and ROICs are going up, we think those stores have much higher long-term potential, because they have so much more parking, they have is their depreciation begins to fall of the books. As their sale continue to climb, increasing leverage less spoilage the just become more and more efficient, so it’s going to be very interesting to watch the larger store awards as they reach their maturation phase and we starting to move 10-plus years.”

“the food retailing industry is undergoing a sea change of transformation. You have got strong regional players consolidating their positions and lots of smaller independence are basically either closing their doors or looking to get out.”

“We wouldn’t do the kind of loyalty program that other traditional food retailers are doing. We are not to impressed with those type of programs. But we are looking at something that will have a unique Whole Foods Market flavor to it.”

“Our new stores are performing extremely well relative to any historical time period in over 30-year. We have never had new stores on average, particularly as many new stores that are, there used to be a lot of holes in the boat. These stores would be losing money in and have negative EBITDA or maybe driving it down or some of them would. And we are seeing very few stores in that category, so overall we are very pleased with our new store performance.”

“We tend to really, I would look at new trends of products to bring products in earlier than other people and we know that a lot of other competitors look at what we are doing to the kind of products we are offering, what new trends there might be and then try to bring those products in as well, so it is very dynamic and I would say that we are looking at what everyone is doing and they are looking at what we are doing and it’s constantly adjusting and it’s challenging environment and you are constantly adjusting to what each other is doing.”