the face of growing competition in the U.S. grocery space,
recently disrupted by online retail giant Amazon.com <AMZN.O>,
Cincinnati-based Kroger has been slashing prices and boosting
investments in technology to attract more shoppers.
Under its two-year-old "Restock Kroger" program, the company has
also been focusing on private-label brand display, rearranging
store layouts and expanding services such as home delivery and
"Restock Kroger sets Kroger up for a stronger future... Momentum
is returning to our core grocery business," Chief Executive
Officer Rodney McMullen said.
The company forecast adjusted profit between $2.30 and $2.40 per
share in 2020, and identical sales growth, excluding fuel, to be
greater than 2.25%.
Analysts are expecting the company to earn $2.30 per share in
2020 and report same-store sales growth of 1.99%, according to
IBES data from Refinitiv.
Shares of Kroger were up more than 2% before the bell.
Kroger also said it expects capital investments, excluding
mergers, acquisitions, and purchases of leased facilities, to
rise between $3.2 billion and $3.4 billion next year.
The company in September had raised doubts about its profit
targets from its ongoing turnaround plan, spooking investors
about the outcome of its plan.
However, Kroger reconfirmed its 2019 forecast on identical sales
(Reporting by Nivedita Balu in Bengaluru; Editing by Shinjini
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