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Duane Reade Holdings, Inc. Reports Fourth Quarter and Full Year 2008 Results
Date:3/10/2009

improved assortments of higher margin products, increased pharmacy margins due to higher rates of generic utilization and reductions in the level of inventory shrink losses. Selling, general and administrative expenses as a percentage of total net sales was 26.9% in 2008 compared to 26.5% in the prior year. Excluding the $3.5 million fourth quarter litigation settlement charge, selling, general and administrative expenses were 26.7% and were adversely impacted in the current year by higher store occupancy costs associated with new stores, reduced real estate income and additional recruitment fees and relocation costs paid in connection with the hiring of senior management executives. These items were partially offset by improved leveraging of costs against strong same-store sales growth in both pharmacy and front-end.

For the full year, operating loss was $15.8 million compared with a $24.6 million operating loss in the prior year. Excluding the $3.5 million litigation settlement charge in 2008, the full year operating loss was $12.3 million. The improvement in operating loss was primarily due to strong same-store sales growth and the improvement in gross margin percentage as well as a $4.5 million reduction in depreciation and amortization expense due primarily to certain intangible assets becoming fully amortized. The operating loss also reflects a $0.9 million increase in other expenses. See Table 6 attached to this press release for a detailed breakdown of other expenses compared to the previous year. The prior year operating loss included a $1.3 million gain from the sale of several pharmacy prescription files, which did not recur in the current year.

Net loss was $72.8 million, compared to $87.8 million in the prior year. The improvement in this measure is attributable to the factors discussed above as well as reduced interest expense of $6.1 million in the current year. The reduction in interest expense was primarily
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SOURCE Duane Reade Holdings, Inc.
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