True Value Co. has released its final annual report as a cooperative, showing a slight revenue decline in 2017 from the year prior.
In April, the company announced the sale of 70 percent of its stock to private-equity firm ACON Investments and its plans to transition away from the co-op business model.
In 2017, True Value’s revenue was about $1.49 billion, down 1.7 percent compared to the prior year. The dip was “primarily due to product sales related to the net change in participating retailers,” the company reports.
After six years of consecutive sales growth, gross billings were about $2.06 billion, down 0.9 percent in 2017 from the year prior, according to the company.
“New ground-up store activity was consistent in both count and dollar volume to last year,” True Value says in the financial report. “However, due to competitors capitalizing on sale rumors, the company experienced a lower level of conversions from other buying groups to True Value in the second half of 2017.”
In addition, comparable store sales were down “as weather related categories were lower by 1.6 percent compared to the prior year,” the company reports.
Based on the 1,700 retailers who provided point-of-sale data, comparable retail sales increased 0.8 percent. Stores that participate in the Destination True Value program experienced retail sales growth of 1.9 percent.
The company signed 59 new core hardware stores in 2017 and 52 international and specialty stores. The company also had 27 retailers convert to True Value from other buying groups.
The co-op had 4,311 member stores at the end of 2017, a decline from 4,392 at the end of 2016.