Staples (SPLS) Shares Dip as Retail, International Sales Slip in Q1

May 16, 2012 9:19 AM EDT
Shares of Staples, Inc. (Nasdaq: SPLS) are getting jammed following efforts by the large office supplies giant to make copies in its "earnings beat" machine.

To start, CEO Ron Sargent commented, "In North America we continue to build momentum in categories beyond office supplies while trends in our international business remain soft." You almost know what's coming before you read the rest. If you're an investor in Staples, you're probably asking yourself, "What does Staples offer beyond office supplies? Furniture? No, that's still used in offices. phones? Wait, maybe its the Software segment! Is it the software segment?"

It's not the Software segment. It's the North American Delivery segment, which encompasses Staples Advantage, Staples Business, and Quill Corp.

Staples first-quarter top-line shrank by 1.1 percent to $6.10 billion, versus expectations of $6.19 billion by the Street. NA Delivery revs rose 1.7 percent, while Staples other two segments numbers fell.

Net income dropped 5.6 percent to $187.06 million, or 27 cents per share. Adjusting for certain one-time items, earnings were a more robust 30 cents per share, in-line with expectations.

Looking ahead, Staples reaffirmed its fiscal 2012 outlook.

Shares are down 3.7 percent early Wednesday.

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