ETOBICOKE, Ontario -- Oshawa Group here said sales and earnings rose for the first quarter ended April 18.
uals $1.46 Canadian), while earnings on continuing operations -- excluding Pharma Plus, a group of drug stores that was sold last year -- rose 70%.
The company said sales at continuing operations rose 5.5% to $1.06 billion, with sales in the AGORA grocery operation up 3.1% and sales in the SERCA food-service division up 17.7%.
According to the company, food-service sales were enhanced by the addition of Scott National, which operated for the full 12 weeks of the first quarter, compared with only eight weeks in last year's first quarter; without those incremental sales, SERCA's sales growth was 3.8%, the company noted.
The company said sales in the AGORA central region were enhanced by an aggressive merchandising strategy, which matured throughout the prior fiscal year, while sales and margin improvements, plus the closing of unprofitable stores in prior quarters, strengthened operating results in the eastern region.