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Costco CFO Dreams Of More Private Label

March 13, 2013

Costco reported fiscal second quarter earnings this week that rose 22 percent, excluding special items, and Chief Financial Officer Richard Galanti talked a little about private label on the company’s conference call with analysts.

Asked if Costco’s Kirkland Signature private label line was growing as a percent of SKUs in the club, Galanti said it absolutely was, and that the line generally sold by 10 percent to 20 percent less than national brands at the club.

“You know, private label (share) is in the low 20s, and continues to grow,” Galanti said, according to transcripts from Seeking Alpha. “And you know, when we talk about aspirational numbers, we’d like to see a three in front of it instead of a two. But I don’t know how long that takes.

“Certainly, we keep adding new items. In the last couple of years, we’ve certainly added several items in apparel and canned goods, those types of items.”

Same-store sales for the quarter rose 5 percent from a year earlier. Galanti said that frozen foods, candy, and deli had strong sales in the food and sundries category, while hardware, patio and garden, lawn and garden, and tires had the strongest results.

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