The Jean Coutu Group (PJC) Inc.
TSX : PJC.A

The Jean Coutu Group (PJC) Inc.

June 14, 2007 15:14 ET

The Jean Coutu Group-May Same Store Sales Increase 6.5% in the Canadian Network and Decrease 2.3% in the United States Network

LONGUEUIL, QUEBEC--(Marketwire - June 14, 2007) - The Jean Coutu Group (PJC) Inc. (the "Company" or the "Jean Coutu Group") (TSX:PJC.A) today announced retail sales results for the four weeks ended June 2, 2007. Retail sales growth percentages quoted herein are denominated in local currency in order to exclude the impact of currency rate fluctuations. Please note that monthly retail sales numbers are preliminary and unaudited.

Monthly Retail Sales

For the four week period ended June 2, 2007, the Company's Canadian franchise network's same store retail sales were up 6.5%, pharmacy same store sales gained 7.9% while front-end same store sales increased 4.0% year-over-year. The network showed a 7.0% increase in total retail sales compared with the same period last year. Retail sales for the period were $223.6 million.



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RETAIL SALES GROWTH
MAY 2007 Canada(1) USA
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Same store sales growth
Total 6.5% -2.3%
Pharmacy 7.9% -2.9%
Front-end 4.0% -0.6%

Total sales growth
Total 7.0% -3.6%
Pharmacy 8.3% -4.4%
Front-end 4.8% -1.3%

Sales mix
Pharmacy 61% 73%
Front-end 39% 27%

(1) Franchised outlets' retail sales are not included in the
Company's consolidated financial statements.
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For the four week period ended June 2, 2007, the United States corporate network total same store retail sales decreased 2.3% . Pharmacy same store sales decreased 2.9%, reflecting an approximate 658 basis points negative impact from new generic introductions, which have a lower selling price than brand drugs, but higher gross margins to the drugstore retailer. Front-end same store sales decreased 0.6% compared with the same period of the 2006 fiscal year and performed well in the general merchandise and beauty categories. The network posted a 3.6% decrease in total retail sales when compared with the May period of the 2006 fiscal year. The May 2007 total retail sales growth figures were negatively impacted by a Memorial Day holiday shift since the holiday was included in the current sales reporting period ended on June 2, 2007, while total retail sales figures for the period ended May 27, 2006 did not include the holiday. Retail sales for the period were $731.8 million.

Year-to-Date Retail Sales

For the fifty three-week period ended June 2, 2007, the Company's Canadian franchise network showed a 9.9% increase in retail sales compared with the fifty two-week period last year, or 7.5% on a comparable fifty three-week period basis.

The United States corporate pharmacy network posted a 2.9% increase in retail sales for the same period when compared with the fifty two-week period of the 2006 fiscal year, or 0.9% on a comparable fifty three-week period basis.

Disclosure practices

On June 4, 2007, the Company announced it had closed the previously announced transaction to sell its United States network of 1,854 Brooks and Eckerd drugstores to Rite Aid Corporation. As a result, the Company will no longer report retail sales growth figures for the US network.

In fiscal 2008, the Company will begin reporting retail sales growth figures for the Canadian franchise network on a quarterly basis along with its quarterly report to shareholders. This approach is consistent with the Company's Canadian retailing peer.

About The Jean Coutu Group

The Jean Coutu Group (PJC) Inc. operates a network of 326 franchised drugstores in Canada located in the provinces of Quebec, New Brunswick and Ontario (under the banners of PJC Jean Coutu, PJC Clinique and PJC Sante Beaute) and employs more than 15,000 people. The Jean Coutu Group is one of the most trusted names in Canadian pharmacy retailing. The Company holds a significant interest in Rite Aid Corporation, one of the United States' leading drugstore chains, with annual revenues of more than $27 billion and more than 5,000 drugstores in 31 states and the District of Columbia.

Certain statements in this press release are forward-looking statements, which involve risks and uncertainties. Forward-looking statements include all statements that do not relate solely to historical or current facts, and you can identify forward-looking statements because they contain words such as "believes," "expects," "may," "will," "should," "seeks," "approximately," "intends," "plans," "estimates," "projects" or "anticipates" or similar expressions that concern our strategy, plans or intentions. These forward-looking statements are subject to risks and uncertainties that may change at any time, and, therefore, our actual results may differ materially from those expected. While the Company believes that its assumptions are reasonable, it is very difficult to predict the impact of known factors, and, of course, it is impossible to anticipate all factors that could affect the Company's actual results. The Company undertakes no obligation to update any forward-looking statements contained in this press release.

Contact Information

  • Source:
    The Jean Coutu Group (PJC) Inc.
    or
    Information:
    Michael Murray
    Director, Investor Relations
    450-646-9611, ext. 1068
    or
    Helene Bisson
    Director, Public Relations
    450-646-9611, ext. 1165
    Toll free: 1-866-878-5206