Market Overview

Hibbett Sports Scores on Earnings

Hibbett Sports (NASDAQ: HIBB) reported its fourth quarter and full-year earnings Friday, scoring high on both counts.

The Birmingham, Alabama-based firm reported earnings of $0.73 per share in the fourth quarter -- up 24 percent from the fourth-quarter of fiscal year 2012. This also topped the Wall Street consensus of $0.71.

Revenue climbed 14 percent year-over-year and finished at $217.4 million in the fourth quarter. This also topped analysts' expectations, which averaged $216.9 million.

Full-year EPS grew 26.5 percent and finished at $2.72, narrowly edging estimates of $2.70.

Total revenue for the year improved nearly 12 percent and finished at $818.7 million - about on par with the Wall Street consensus.

Moving the Chains on Comparable Store Sales

Comparable store sales climbed around five percent during the fourth quarter.

For the year, this figure grew nearly seven percent.

Gaining Ground

The sporting goods firm closed two stores in the fourth quarter, but opened 27 for a net gain of 25.

Overall, the company gained 41 stores in fiscal-year 2013 and now has 873 locations.

On this note, Hibbett Sports expanded 13 existing locations, as well.

Additionally, the company began building a new wholesale and logistics facility in Fall 2012 in Alabaster, Alabama. The 360,000 square-foot facility will be designed for expansion up to 500,000 square feet.

Once complete, the building will replace Hibbett's existing facility that it leases in Birmingham. According to President and CEO Jeff Rosenthal, the building will be able to support over 2,000 stores. It is expected to be fully operational by Fall 2014.

Close Call on Guidance

Hibbett Sports expects EPS to finish in the $2.85 to $3.05 range. While the high end of this range is on par with analysts' expectations of $3.02, the middle-ground of $2.95 would fall short of the consensus.

The company plans to open 65 to 70 new stores in FY 2014 and close 15 to 20 for a net gain of 45 to 55 stores. It also plans to expand approximately 18 locations.

Slam Dunk on Wall Street

Hibbett has hovered in the low-to-mid $50s since early November.

After rising above $54 in early March, Hibbett declined steadily and closed below $52 on Wednesday. However, it finished up over three percent on Thursday and is up again on Friday.

The stock is at its highest point in the last four months. It has eclipsed $55 for the first time in two months.

Hibbett Sports is up nearly four percent on Friday.

Posted-In: Earnings News Guidance Best of Benzinga

 

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