METRO reports 14.9% growth in 2013 first quarter net earnings per share from continuing operations

METRO reports 14.9% growth in 2013 first quarter net earnings per share from 
continuing operations 
MONTREAL, Jan. 29, 2013 /CNW Telbec/ - METRO INC. (TSX: MRU) announced its 
results today for the first quarter ended December 22, 2012. 
HIGHLIGHTS 


    --  Net earnings of $121.4 million or fully diluted net earnings
        per share of $1.23, up 21.8%
    --  Net earnings from continuing operations of $115.0 million, up
        11.0%
    --  Fully diluted net earnings per share from continuing operations
        of $1.16, up 14.9%
    --  Sales of $2,704.7 million, up 2.7%
    --  Same stores sales up 1.5%
    --  Declared dividend of $0.25 per share, up 16.3%
                                            12 weeks / Fiscal Year

(Millions of dollars,
except for net earnings per     2013       %    2012       % Change (%)
share/EPS)

Sales                        2,704.7   100.0 2,632.6   100.0        2.7

EBITDA((1))                    188.2     7.0   179.5     6.8        4.8

Net earnings                   121.4     4.5   103.7     3.9       17.1

Fully diluted EPS               1.23 —    1.01 —       21.8

Net earnings from continuing   115.0     4.3   103.6     3.9       11.0
operations

Fully diluted EPS from          1.16 —    1.01 —       14.9
continuing operations
    PRESIDENT'S MESSAGE 

"We are pleased with our 2013 first quarter results which were achieved in a 
challenging economic environment of very low food inflation, intensifying 
competition and cautious consumers. Our teams executed well on our business 
plans and we are confident that we can continue((2)) on our growth path in the 
coming quarters," stated EricR.LaFlèche, President and Chief Executive 
Officer.

2013 FIRST QUARTER RESULTS

SALES

Sales in the first quarter of 2013 reached $2,704.7million versus 
$2,632.6million last year, an increase of 2.7%. Same store sales 
increasedby 1.5%. The first quarter for fiscal 2013 includes the sales for 
the week preceding Christmas whereas, in fiscal 2012, the sales for that week 
were included in the second quarter. The Christmas week shift will have a 
negative impact on 2013 second quarter sales compared to the 2012 second 
quarter. We experienced very low inflation in our food basket in the first 
quarter.

EARNINGS BEFORE FINANCIAL COSTS, TAXES, DEPRECIATION AND AMORTIZATION 
(EBITDA)((1))

EBITDA((1)) for the first quarter of 2013 was $188.2million, up 4.8% from 
$179.5million for the same quarter last year. First-quarter EBITDA((1)) 
represented 7.0% of sales versus 6.8% last year.

Gross margin as percentage of sales in the first quarter of 2013 was 18.7% 
versus 18.4% in the corresponding quarter last year.

DEPRECIATION AND AMORTIZATION AND NET FINANCIAL COSTS

Total depreciation and amortization expense for the first quarter of 2013 
amounted to $41.9million versus $42.2million in 2012. First quarter net 
financial costs totalled $11.1million in 2013 compared to $10.1million for 
the corresponding quarter last year. The average financing rate was 4.5% in 
the first quarter of 2013 versus 4.1% for the corresponding period last fiscal 
year.

SHARE OF AN ASSOCIATE'S EARNINGS

Our share of earnings in Alimentation Couche-Tard was $19.0million for the 
first quarter of 2013 versus $13.0million for the same quarter of 2012.

INCOME TAXES

The income tax expense of $39.2million for the first quarter of 2013 
represented an effective tax rate of 25.4% compared with $36.6million and an 
effective tax rate of 26.1% in 2012. The decrease in the effective tax rate is 
attributable notably to the 1.5% federal corporate tax rate reduction 
effective January1,2012.

NET EARNINGS

Net earnings for the first quarter of 2013 were $121.4million, an increase 
of 17.1% over net earnings of $103.7million for the same quarter of 2012. 
Fully diluted net earnings per share rose 21.8% to $1.23 from $1.01 last year.

NET EARNINGS FROM DISCONTINUED OPERATION

In the first quarter of 2013, we discontinued our food service operation and 
disposed of the Distagro division which supplied restaurant chains and 
convenience stores belonging to and operated by gas station chains. The gain 
on disposal is presented under the item "Discontinued operation" for the first 
quarter of 2013 as is the sales and the expenses associated with this division 
for the first quarters of 2013 and 2012. Net earnings from discontinued 
operation were $6.4million for the first quarter of 2013 versus 
$0.1millionfor the same quarter of 2012.

NET EARNINGS FROM CONTINUING OPERATIONS

Net earnings from continuing operations were $115.0million for the first 
quarter of 2013, an increase of 11.0% over $103.6million for the same 
quarter last year. Fully diluted net earnings per share from continuing 
operations were $1.16for the first quarter of 2013 compared to $1.01 last 
year, an increase of 14.9%.
                                         12 weeks / Fiscal Year
                        2013                  2012           Change (%)
             (Millions     Fully   (Millions     Fully        Net   Fully
                        diluted                diluted   earnings diluted
                    of      EPS           of      EPS                 EPS
              dollars) (Dollars)    dollars) (Dollars)

Net earnings     121.4      1.23       103.7      1.01       17.1    21.8

Net earnings     (6.4)    (0.07)       (0.1)   —                   
from
discontinued
operation

Net earnings     115.0      1.16       103.6      1.01       11.0    14.9
from
continuing
operations
    NORMAL COURSE ISSUER BID PROGRAM

Under the normal course issuer bid program, the Corporation may repurchase up 
to 6,000,000 of its Common Shares between September10, 2012 and 
September9,2013. Between September10, 2012 and January18, 2013, the 
Corporation has repurchased 1,241,000Common Shares at an average price of 
$59.15 for a total of $73.4million. This program offers us an additional 
option for using excess funds.

DIVIDENDS

On January28, 2013, the Corporation's Board of Directors declared a 
quarterly dividend of $0.25 per Common Share payable March15, 2013, an 
increase of 16.3% over the dividend declared for the same quarter last year. 
On an annualized basis, this dividend represents approximately 20% of 2012 net 
earnings.

FORWARD-LOOKING INFORMATION

We have used, throughout this report, different statements that could, within 
the context of regulations issued by the Canadian Securities Administrators, 
be construed as being forward-looking information. In general, any statement 
contained herein, which does not constitute a historical fact, may be deemed a 
forward-looking statement. Expressions such as "continue" and other similar 
expressions are generally indicative of forward-looking statements. The 
forward-looking statements contained herein are based upon certain assumptions 
regarding the Canadian food industry, the general economy, our annual budget, 
as well as our 2013 action plan.

These forward-looking statements do not provide any guarantees as to the 
future performance of the Corporation and are subject to potential risks, 
known and unknown, as well as uncertainties that could cause the outcome to 
differ significantly. An economic slowdown or recession, or the arrival of a 
new competitor, are examples described under the "Risk Management" section of 
the 2012AnnualReport which could have an impact on these statements. We 
believe these statements to be reasonable and pertinent as at the date of 
publication of this report and represent our expectations. The Corporation 
does not intend to update any forward-looking statement contained herein, 
except as required by applicable law.

IFRS AND NON-IFRS MEASUREMENTS

In addition to the IFRS earnings measurements provided, we have included 
certain IFRS and non-IFRS earnings measurements. These measurements are 
presented for information purposes only. They do not have a standardized 
meaning prescribed by IFRS and therefore may not be comparable to similar 
measurements presented by other public companies.

EARNINGS BEFORE FINANCIAL COSTS, TAXES, DEPRECIATION AND AMORTIZATION (EBITDA)

EBITDA is a measurement of earnings that excludes financial costs, taxes, 
depreciation and amortization. It is an additional IFRS measurement and it is 
presented separately in the consolidated statements of income. We believe that 
EBITDA is a measurement commonly used by readers of financial statements to 
evaluate a company's operational cash-generating capacity and ability to 
discharge its financial expenses.

ADJUSTED NET EARNINGS FROM CONTINUING OPERATIONS AND ADJUSTED FULLY DILUTED 
NET EARNINGS PER SHARE FROM CONTINUING OPERATIONS

Adjusted net earnings from continuing operations and adjusted fully diluted 
net earnings per share from continuing operations are earnings measurements 
that exclude non-recurring items. They are non-IFRS measurements. We believe 
that presenting earnings without non-recurring items leaves readers of 
financial statements better informed as to the current period and 
corresponding period's earnings, thus enabling them to better evaluate the 
Corporation's performance and judge its future outlook.

CONFERENCE CALL

Financial analysts and institutional investors are invited to participate in a 
conference call on the 2013first quarter results at 4:00 p.m. (EST) on 
Tuesday, January29,2013. To access the conference call, please dial 647 
427-7450 or 1888231-8191. The media and investing public may access this 
conference via a listen mode only.

Notice to readers: METRO INC. first quarter of 2013 interim condensed 
consolidated financial statements and management's discussion and analysis are 
available on the Internet at www.metro.ca - Corporate Site - Annual Report and 
Other Documents - QuarterlyResults - 2013First QuarterResults.


((1))See section "IFRS and Non-IFRS Measurements"
((2))See section "Forward-looking Information"  
François Thibault Senior Vice-President, Chief Financial Officer and 
Treasurer Tel.: (514) 643-1003  Investor RelationsDepartment: Tel.: (514) 
643-1055 E-mail:finance@metro.ca 
SOURCE: Metro inc. 
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CO: Metro inc.
ST: Quebec
NI: RET FDR ERN CONF DIV  
-0- Jan/29/2013 16:30 GMT
 
 
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