Dollarama sales were flat, and profit decreased slightly in fiscal 2021 fourth quarter. However, the company says despite the less-than-stellar results, it is optimistic about long-term growth and says it will open 2,000 stores in Canada by 2031. Previously the target was 1,700 stores. The discount chain reported on March 31 that comparable store sales fell 0.2 per cent in the quarter, which is usually the highest sales period of the year.
The company’s total fourth quarter sales grew by 3.6 per cent to $1.1 billion, with growth driven entirely by new store openings. The company reported net earnings of $173.9 million, down from $178.7 million in the same period the prior year.
Dollarama entered the fourth quarter with a strong momentum with comparable store sales of 7.0 per cent, but new stringent pandemic measures in December in Ontario, Alberta and Quebec and a temporary ban on the sale of non-essential items in Quebec, where 30 per cent of its stores are located, negatively impacted in-store traffic and sales for the remainder of the quarter.
"In the fourth quarter, historically our highest sales period of the year, our strong sales momentum was interrupted by the introduction of more stringent public health measures in several provinces in the month of December,” said Neil Rossy, president and CEO in a statement. “These stricter measures resulted in an abrupt and sustained decline in store traffic and sales through to fiscal year-end. With such restrictions gradually lifted starting in February, strong sales momentum returned in Fiscal 2022 and has remained quarter to date, as consumers continue to recognize the value and convenience of shopping at Dollarama."