CarMax Earnings Call Nuggets: New Store Growth and Conversion and Execution

CarMax (NYSE:KMX) recently reported its first quarter earnings and discussed the following topics in its earnings conference call.

New Store Growth

Craig Kennison – Robert W. Baird & Co.: Given the strong performance you’ve seen this quarter and the last few quarters, would you or the Board consider accelerating your new store growth opening plan?

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Tom Folliard – President and CEO: We feel pretty comfortable with the growth plan that we’ve announced for the next few years. As we’ve talked about in the past, we try to pick a growth plan that would allow us to both aggressively grow our store base and at the same time continue to work hard on improving execution, which we’ve seen some great execution improvements here in the last year or so. We made great progress in the last couple of years on cost reduction and our reconditioning area. We still think we have a little to go there. So, we feel pretty comfortable with the growth base. We think it’s both aggressive, but at the same time allows us to continue to improve the existing business model.

Conversion and Execution

Matthew Nemer – Wells Fargo Securities: I am just wondering if Tom, if you could talk to the factors that you think are driving improved conversion and execution in the store, if there have been any process changes or anything else you can talk to?

Tom Folliard – President and CEO: You know it’s not really any one thing. We have a really terrific and dedicated group of associates that have worked on training and development for a long time, but I think that’s more of a marathon than a sprint. So, we’ve made tons of progress in the stores with specific training for both our sales consultants and our sales managers. We have more to work with, with the favorable credit environment that Tom mentioned and about 90% of our customers are receiving an offer from one of the lenders, so there is a little more to work with there. We have more tenure now in our sales consultant organization in general. We’ve just been around for a while. Some of our older store folks have been with us for 10 or 15 years. So, I just think it’s a long-long process and I think some of our efforts and training and development are really starting to pay dividends.

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Matthew Nemer – Wells Fargo Securities: Maybe you could – is there anything you can highlight that’s changed in the last quarter or two in terms of learnings from the next gen store that you’ve sort of rolled out to the older stores?

Tom Folliard – President and CEO: No. There really hasn’t been anything that we have rolled back yet. So, this is all just again continuous improvement and continuous effort across a very big base of associates and we’re very proud of their efforts and clearly it’s paying some pretty good dividends.

A Closer Look: CarMax Earnings Cheat Sheet>>