EC Empire Co. - Canadian Grocer Paying Dividends Since 1963

Whether you’re looking for your weekly meals or want to build a passive income empire, an enterprise like Canadian-based Empire Company (EMLAF) can assist in either.

The company’s history dates back to 1963 but its related subsidiaries have now been serving customers for over a century.

Empire operates in two separate businesses: food retailing and investments / other operations. On the retail side Empire runs over 1,800 groceries and fueling stations like Sobey’s, Safeway, Thrifty Foods, Foodland and Lawtons. On the investment side, Empire has a 41.5% stake in Crombie REIT (CRR.UN) and a 40% interest in Genstar.

Here’s how the company lays out its operations:



Source: Empire, Scotiabank Back To School Conference

U.S. based investors may not be familiar with the name, but Empire represents the second largest food retailer in Canada – spanning coast-to-coast in ten provinces with pharmacy, wholesale and fuel offerings to boot.

The company ranks fairly well using The 8 Rules of Dividend Investing.  Keep reading this article to learn more about the investment prospects of Empire Company stock.

Current Events

On September 15th of 2016, Empire released first quarter fiscal 2017 results, for the period ending August 6th, 2016.
Note: all numbers will be in Canadian dollars as a result of the company’s location and operations.

For the quarter sales came in at $6.187 billion, representing a decline of about 1% as compared to the previous year ago period. Adjusted net earnings came in at $73.6 million compared $121.7 million in the previous year, a decrease of nearly 40%. Adjusted earnings per share were $0.27 as compared to $0.44 in the previous period, a 39% decrease.

Notably, the Western portion of the business has been challenging, as the economy is both a core market for Empire and tied to the energy industry, which has been languishing as of late.

For the year ending May 2016, Empire reported net sales that were 2.9% higher – increasing to $24.6 billion. Adjusted net earnings came in at $410 million, as compared to $511 million in the previous fiscal year. And adjusted earnings-per-share came in at $1.50 – down from $1.84 in the previous year.

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