July 1, 2009, 12:00 AM

Web sales drop slightly for School Specialty in FY 2009

For the fiscal year ended April 25, School Specialty reported a drop in web sales of 1.4%. Total revenue for School Specialty, which operates multiple e-commerce sites for brands such as ChildCraft and Sax Arts and Crafts, decreased 3.7%.

Mark Brohan

Research Director

School Specialty Inc., an online retailer and direct marketer of supplemental learning materials for teachers, schools and parents, reported a slight drop in web sales for fiscal 2009.

For the fiscal year ended April 25, School Specialty, No. 89 in the Internet Retailer Top 500 Guide, had e-commerce revenue of $177.5 million, a drop of 1.4% from web sales of $180 million in fiscal 2008. Total revenue for School Specialty, which operates multiple e-commerce sites for brands such as ChildCraft and Sax Arts and Crafts, decreased 3.7% to $1.05 billion in the latest fiscal year from $1.09 billion in FY 2008. Overall the web accounted for 17% of total sales in FY 2009, the same total as in the prior year.

School Specialty posted net income of $34.5 million in fiscal 2009, a decrease of 16.1% from net income of $41.1 million in fiscal 2008. The company, which doesn’t break out quarterly web sales, had sales in the fourth quarter of $156.1 million, a decline of 10.1% from sales of $173.6 million in Q4 of FY 2008. Net income for the final quarter dropped year over year to $11.3 million from $15.5 million. “The decrease was primarily due to reductions in spending by school districts caused by uncertainty in the timing and level of state education funding,” the company says.

School Specialty sells supplemental learning materials to about 80% of all U.S. school districts, the company says.

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