The Home Depot® said its diluted earnings per share for the 2005 fiscal year share were up 20.4% to $2.72 on net earnings of $5.8 billion. Sales for the fiscal year were $81.5 billion, up 11.5% vs. fiscal 2004. Comparable store sales for the year grew 3.8%.

For the fourth quarter, diluted earnings per share rose 27.7% to 60 cents on net earnings of $1.3 billion for the fourth quarter of fiscal 2005, compared with 47 cents on net earnings of $1 billion for the same period in 2004. Fourth quarter sales were up 15.9% at $19.5 billion. Comparable store sales for the quarter increased 5.5%.

In 2005 Home Depot invested $3.9 billion back into its business, spent $2.5 billion to acquire 21 companies, and returned nearly $3.9 billion to shareholders in dividends and share repurchases, according to Carol Tome, executive vice president and CFO.

The Home Depot Supply enjoyed triple-digit growth and now represents about 5% of the company's sales. This strengthened the company's position in the Maintenance, Repair and Operations (MRO), builder and professional supply platforms. Among the acquisitions that fueled Home Depot Supply's success, are the following made in the fourth quarter of fiscal 2005:

  • Southwest Rebar, a leading rebar fabricator and construction supply distributor with three locations in Arizona. With Southwest Rebar, White Cap now operates 103 branches in 23 states;

  • Traditional Floor Covering, a flooring installer with four locations in Florida. With Traditional Floor Covering, Creative Touch Interiors now operates 37 branches in 14 states and sells to 18 of the top 20 home builders;

  • Sesco/Quesco Electric Supply, an 80-year old distributor of electrical supplies with four locations in Toronto, Ontario. With Sesco/Quesco Electric Supply, the MRO companies operate 206 branches in 45 states and provinces in the United States and Canada;

  • and the acquisition of wholesaler Hughes Supply, expected to close in April, which will bring projected 2006 combined sales to nearly $12 billion, more than doubling the size of Home Depot Supply.

    The Home Depot reported its average customer ticket grew to a record $57.98 for fiscal year 2005, up 5.6% vs. the previous year. In the fourth quarter, the average ticket was $57.20, an increase of 5.7%. This represents about a $10 increase over the last five years.

    The Home Depot said that it grew its core appliance market share from 8.1% to 9.7% on a 12-month rolling basis, according to independent third party research. The company said its successes were bolstered by store technology initiatives such as back-end scanned receiving, vendor certification for certified receiving; self-checkout registers, now in 1,272 stores; centralized automated replenishment, now expanded to 20% of store sales; and implementation of a Special Order Services initiative pilot in 285 stores and at the Tampa Call Center.

    Its services business grew 21.4% during fiscal 2005. The company reported strong growth in installation of countertops, roofing/gutters, kitchens, windows and HVAC.

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