Aaron’s profit drops on economic challenges

The struggling economic recovery took a bite out of Atlanta-based rent-to-own giant Aaron’s.

The company on Thursday reported that its revenue rose in the second quarter, but overall profit plummeted.

Revenue was $552 million, up 2 percent from $538.6 million during the same period last year, the retailer said. But net income fell more than 28 percent to $25.8 million or 34 cents a share from $36.2 million or 48 cents a share a year ago.

Ronald Allen, Aaron’s chairman, president and chief executive officer, said same-store sales were up, but that the economy remains a challenge.

“We were expecting better revenue and customer growth during the quarter, but the financial headwinds and general economic stress we saw in the first quarter on our customers continued into the second quarter,” he said in the earnings release. “Shipments of products to our franchisees again were below last year’s numbers, as customers of our franchised stores are experiencing similar economic challenges. We anticipate these trends will continue in the near term, but remain very positive and optimistic on the long term prospects for the company.”