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China Nepstar Chain Drugstore Reports Third Quarter 2008 Results
Date:11/26/2008

store sales were calculated based on 1,399 stores opened as of December 31, 2006.

Gross profit in the third quarter of 2008 increased by 30.5% to RMB298 million (US$44 million) from RMB228 million for the same period in 2007. Gross margin for the third quarter of 2008 increased to 48.6% from 47.1% for the same period in 2007. The increase in gross margin was largely driven by changes in product mix, including increased contributions from private label products and centrally procured merchandise.

Sales, marketing and other operating expenses as a percentage of revenue for the third quarter of 2008 increased to 41.1% from 31.8% for the same period in 2007. The increase was primarily due to an increase in the proportion of newly opened stores in the Company's store base. As of September 30, 2008, the Company had a total of 1,268 stores opened after January 1, 2007, which accounted for 47.5% of the Company's store base. Compared to stores that have been in operation for two or more years, stores that have been in operation for fewer than two years generally generate lower revenue, but incur similar or higher rental and labor costs. The higher expense ratio was also partially due to increased salary and rental costs of older stores, which mainly reflected the overall higher inflation rate in China.

General and administrative expenses as a percentage of revenue for the third quarter of 2008 increased to 4.4% from 3.3% for the same period in 2007. The increase was primarily due to additional administrative and compliance costs related to being a publicly listed company.

As the result of the above, operating income for third quarter of 2008 was RMB19 million (US$3 million) compared to RMB58 million for the same period in 2007.

The Company's effective tax rate was 27.0% for third quarter of 2008, compared to the effective tax rate of 16.7% for the same period of 2007. The increase
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SOURCE China Nepstar Chain Drugstore Ltd.
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