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Michael Knell

The Brick acquisition bolsters Leon's

TORONTO - Its acquisition of chief rival The Brick led to a strong uptick in third quarter sales and earnings for Leon's Furniture, which is now one of North America's largest full-line furniture, mattress and major appliance retailers.
     Leon's reported system-wide revenues of C$628.6 million. Considering the publicly held and family-managed retailer only took over The Brick on March 28, there isn't a real prior-year comparative.
     Corporate store sales were C$538.6 million, well over double the C$223.7 million for the preacquisition third quarter of 2012. However, the company said same-store sales for the period were down 1%, assuming The Brick stores are included in its comparative 2012 results.
     Franchise sales totaled C$100 million for the period.
     Sales by the company's 33 Leon's banner franchise stores accounted for C$49.8 million, up by less than 1% over the third quarter of 2012.
     The 70-store Brick franchise network had sales of C$50.2 million, up 2.7% year over year. The company attributed the uptick to the five new franchises added to network since the third quarter of 2012.
     Net income for the third quarter of 2013 was C$21.3 million or 30 cents per share, compared with the prior year's C$13.1 million or 19 cents per common share, a 58% increase on a per share basis.
     For the nine months ended Sept. 30, Leon's had system-wide sales of C$1.4 billion, including franchise network sales of C$233.9 million.
     Net income was C$41.1 million or 58 cents per share, compared to C$30.6 million or 44 cents per share - up 32% on a per share basis.

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