OAK BROOK, IL -- Ace Hardware Corporation, the largest retailer-owned hardware cooperative in the world, reported total fiscal 2015 revenues of $5.0 billion, an increase of $344.5 million or 7.3 percent from fiscal 2014. Fiscal 2015 consisted of 52 weeks compared to 53 weeks in fiscal 2014. The 53rd week in fiscal 2014 added approximately $49.4 million in revenues in 2014. Excluding the 53rd week in fiscal 2014, revenues increased $393.9 million or 8.5 percent. Net income was $156.2 million for fiscal 2015, an increase of $14.9 million or 10.5 percent from fiscal 2014.
The fourth quarter of fiscal 2015 consisted of 13 weeks while the fourth quarter of 2014 contained 14 weeks. Total revenues for the fourth quarter of 2015 were $1.2 billion, an increase of $2.4 million or 0.2 percent, from the fourth quarter of 2014. Excluding the extra week in the prior year quarter, fiscal 2015 fourth quarter revenues grew $51.8 million, or 4.7 percent. Net income was $12.1 million for the fourth quarter of 2015 compared to $12.7 million in the fourth quarter of 2014.
"I'm honored to report the third consecutive year of record financial performance for the Company," said John Venhuizen, President and CEO. "My sincere gratitude to the team for delivering shareholders an impressive pre-tax return on equity of 33 percent."
The approximately 3,000 Ace retailers who share daily retail sales data enjoyed a strong fiscal 2015, with increased customer count and average transaction size driving a 4.6 percent same-store-sales increase. Same-store-sales at these stores were up 3.0 percent for the fourth quarter of fiscal 2015. Both percentages exclude the impact of the 53rd week in 2014.
"As the result of the strong 4.6 percent growth in same-store-sales, 158 new domestic stores and the disciplined execution of the entire Ace enterprise, we are delighted to deliver a record $146 million in patronage dividends," said Venhuizen. "This 7.8 percent increase in patronage dividends, coupled with the $51 million customers receive in up front "dividends" through reduced handling charges on price sensitive products, brings total 2015 shareholder return to $197 million."
Ace added 158 new domestic stores in fiscal 2015 and cancelled 98 stores. This brought the Company's total domestic store count to 4,311 at the end of fiscal 2015, an increase of 60 stores from the end of fiscal 2014.