(By Balaseshan) Whole Foods Market Inc. (NASDAQ: WFM), which operates
natural and organic foods supermarkets, said its board of directors has
approved an additional $300 million of stock buyback authority through
December 31, 2014.
The company has about $171 million of authority remaining under its existing program through November 1, 2013.
company had about 185.5 million shares outstanding as of November 16,
2012. The $471 million combined authorization represents about 3% of
shares outstanding at the current stock price.
The company has recently announced a 43% increase in its quarterly
dividend to $0.20 per share and plans to create additional value for its
shareholders through utilization of its stock repurchase authority.
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$1.3 billion in available cash, we are well positioned to maintain a
healthy cash reserve while internally funding our accelerated new store
growth plans," said Walter Robb, co-chief executive officer of Whole
In fiscal 2012, the company had sales of about $12 billion and
currently has 343 stores in the United States, Canada, and the United
The company's stores average 38,000 square feet in size
and 10 years in age, and are supported by its Austin headquarters,
regional offices, distribution centers, bakehouse facilities, commissary
kitchens, seafood-processing facilities, meat and produce procurement
centers, and a specialty coffee, tea procurement and roasting operation.
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WFM is trading up 0.59% at $91.95 on Monday. The stock has been trading between $62.77 and $101.86 for the past 52 weeks.