Troutman ABC Board to begin profit distributions in October
BY DEBBIE PAGE
With liquor sales at the Troutman ABC Store continuing to outpace projections, the ABC Board will begin distributing profits to entities designated by the Troutman Town Council in October.
After building the capital reserve fund to $322,141, nearly the state ABC Commission recommended amount of $355,000, over its 2 1/2 years of existence, the ABC Board decided to begin distributions in the coming fiscal year, Chairman Layton Getsinger said.
The board will still be able to add smaller amounts to the capital reserve each month after making the profit distributions.
The ESC Park Capital Reserve Fund, Troutman Parks and Recreation Department, J. Hoyt Hayes Memorial Troutman Library, and I-SS Schools in Troutman (divided among SIHS, TMS, TES, and CATS) will each receive 12.5 of the store’s profits, with the remaining 50 percent going into the coffers of the Town of Troutman.
Getsinger reported that June net sales ($137,933) were up 6.9 percent over the same month last year, despite many stores across the state posting lower or even negative sales numbers. June’s store profit reached $8,972 after deducting mandatory law enforcement and alcohol distributions.
For the fourth quarter, sales of $415,078 were up 17 percent increase over 2018’s final quarter, with a profit of $25,991. Getsinger said the Drug-Alcohol Coalition of Iredell will receive $2,287.17 for the mandatory distribution for alcohol education efforts from fourth quarter sales with the Troutman Police Department getting $1,633 for the required law enforcement contribution.
Getsinger had predicted net sales of $1,378,500 for 2018-19 in this year’s budget projections, based on the previous year’s sales. Actual net sales reached $1,632,851, for an 18 percent increase. Gross profit for the year was $387,297, with a net profit after expenses and distributions of $118,785.
“We had forecasted not to make a profit in the first five years,” said Getsinger, basing estimates on the ABC Commission’s standard business model as the board created a five-year budget when the store was being built. The commission advised that a store must have sales of $1 million to break even, which normally takes five years.
“I don’t have any way to tell you whether the growth is going to stay like this,” said Getsinger. “We’ve certainly broken the expectations of all of us, including all the people in Raleigh.”
Board member Wes Edmiston added that with town growth, more restaurants arriving that serve liquor by the drink will have a further positive impact on sales. Getsinger noted that the addition of the Cedar Stump Pub has made a big difference already.
Getsinger believes sales could “knock on the door of $2 million” this coming year, but with this further growth, “the bad news is we may to expand the warehouse area,” which is already packed.
The store currently has $175,000 of alcohol in inventory in the store and warehouse, which will have to increase as sales continue to grow.
In his quarterly report to the Troutman Town Council last week, Getsinger also told the efforts to privatize ABC Stores seems to have fizzled in the N.C. Legislature. The focus instead was on distilleries and their ability to have tastings and sell directly to consumers.