MAUMEE, Ohio -- Seaway Food Town here said it had record earnings and increased sales for the year ended Aug. 29 -- the company's third consecutive year of record results.
conversions, increased 0.3%.
For the 13-week fourth quarter, net income fell 7.7% to $1.8 million, while sales increased 2.3% to $156.7 million and comparable-store sales rose 2%.
Richard B. Iott, president and chief executive officer of the 70-store chain, said the company ended the year "with a strong balance sheet, as evidenced by the lowest debt-to-equity ratio in the company's history" -- 0.84-to-1, compared with 0.89-to-1 a year earlier.
According to Iott, "The company continues to remodel existing stores as well as look for new store locations, either by acquisition or by construction, that will meet the changing needs of customers within our trade area."
During the year the company said it converted three conventional stores to its Food Town Plus format. In addition, it converted a conventional store that had been closed during fiscal 1997 into a limited assortment store called Kash N' Karry. Those conversions increased total retail space by 1.6%, the company said.