For investors of grocer and food distributor SuperValu
It's been an eventful year at SuperValu, which runs the Cub Foods and Save-A-Lot grocery chains, among other businesses. The company dealt with labor problems in St. Louis that resulted in four weeks of lost union labor, sold its Denver operations -- Kroger
SuperValu, in short, has performed pretty well so far this year. Getting your arms around its earnings release to quantify that is admittedly somewhat difficult because of all the special items and events -- but if you can manage that, the company is one worth examining, with its history of strong, if uneven, free cash flow and an improving balance sheet.
The company projects EPS of between $2.01 and $2.10 for the whole of fiscal 2004. It's also providing early estimates of between $2.30 and $2.45 per share for fiscal 2005, suggesting earnings growth of between 10% and 20% over that period. Should SuperValu prove able to hit the high end of those ranges, its shares might be interesting even now, despite its run-up over the course of 2003.
Ever visited one of SuperValu's stores? Share your experiences on our SuperValu discussion board.
Dave Marino-Nachison can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.