By Bob Johns
The chocolatier is enjoying opening new stores and enjoying same-store sales growth.
Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory recently released its second quarter 2013 results, and the results are sweet. Overall retail sales grew 19.8 percent, including company-owned same-store sales growth of 1.2 percent. Franchise same-store sales were up 2.4 percent, doubling the company-owned increase.
Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory is an international franchiser, confectionery manufacturer and retail operator with almost 450 locations globally. The company has enjoyed steady growth, and this year appears to be following suit. In the first 6 months, overall revenue grew 8.4 percent through increases in royalty and marketing fees from franchisees. The company continues to expand. “We opened 22 locations in the first half, including 11 U-Swirl locations, six locations co-branded with Cold Stone stores, three international stores and two domestic Buckingham Chocolate Factory standalone stores,” says Bryan Merryman, CFO, COO, treasurer, director of Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory.
Net income rose to $2.2 million from $1.9 million in the previous year. In the second quarter, total revenues increased 12.1%, factory revenues increased 2.6%., and same-store pounds purchased by domestic franchisees increased 2.2%.
The company is looking to continue growth through acquisition. In the past year, the company has acquired a 60 percent stake in U-Swirl. At the same time, U-Swirl acquired Aspen Leaf Yogurt and Yogurtini Self-Serve Frozen Yogurt to add another 46 stores to its 29 locations. “We believe there are good stores in almost every target that we've looked at that will last for the long term. And consequently, we’re paying, and we are willing to pay, very low multiples as it relates to acquisitions of groups of stores in the royalties to come with those stores,” says CEO, president, and chairman of the board, Franklin Crail.