Outdoor financials: West Marine’s Q1 sales increase, plus Jarden

West Marine said first-quarter sales rose 8.5 percent, with demand rising for big-ticket items, and Jarden said it would take a $56 million charge in the first quarter due to inflation in Venezuela.

West Marine posts Q1 sales increase

West Marine (Nasdaq: WMAR) said sales in its first quarter rose 8.5 percent, and the company is seeing more demand for bigger-ticket items like boats and motors. It’s also seeing signs that more people are preparing their boats for usage this year, it added.

For the period ending April 3, the company's sales were $109.6 million, an 8.5-percent increase over the $101 million in the same period last year.

Sales at locations open at least a year rose 8.4 percent.

The company said the impact of stores closed during 2009 and the first quarter of the year hurt revenue by $3.9 million. The company said the bulk of the closures were due to West Marine's efforts to optimize its real estate.

West Marine noted that unseasonably mild weather during the northeast in March also helped boost sales, while cold weather in the southeast hurt sales.

Jarden to take $56 million charge on Venezuelan inflation

Jarden Corp. (NYSE: JAH), parent of Coleman, K2 and Marmot, said it would take a $56 million charge in the first quarter due to inflation in Venezuela.

The company said it would change its accounting retroactive to Jan. 1, 2010, so that the amount, which was originally recorded through equity, will now be recorded as a one-time charge.

It’s also changing the functional currency for its unit in Venezuela to the U.S. dollar from the Venezuelan bolivar, it added.

Consumer prices in Venezuela rose 25.1 percent in 2009, making inflation in that nation one of the highest in the world.

--Compiled by Wendy Geister

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