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Press release from Business Wire

Fred's Reports May Sales

Thursday, June 06, 2013

Fred's Reports May Sales

07:45 EDT Thursday, June 06, 2013

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (Business Wire) -- Fred's Inc. (NASDAQ: FRED) today reported sales for the four-week month of May, which ended June 1, 2013.

Fred's total sales for the month increased 0.2% to $152.4 million from $152.1 million in May 2012. Comparable store sales for the month decreased 0.5% compared with an increase of 1.3% in the same period last year.

Fred's total sales for the first four months of fiscal 2013 increased 0.2% to $653.9 million compared with $652.6 million for the same period last year. On a comparable store basis, year-to-date sales decreased 1.1% versus an increase of 0.1% for the year-earlier period.

Commenting on the announcement, Bruce A. Efird, Chief Executive Officer, said, "May comparable stores were consistent with the outlook we shared last week in connection with first quarter results. Unseasonal cool and wet weather in May continued to have a negative impact on lawn and garden merchandise, summer toys, and other seasonal departments. Additionally, the sales impact of the ongoing brand-to-generic conversion in the pharmacy department more than offset continued growth in script counts. We estimate that this shift reduced total and comparable store sales for the month by approximately 200 basis points. On balance, our results for May provide an encouraging start to the second quarter, and we are pleased that our reconfiguration initiatives continue to gain traction as seen in the overall positive comparable sales in our general merchandise and the total script growth in our pharmacy department."

Fred's, Inc. operates 715 discount general merchandise stores, including 21 franchised Fred's stores, in the southeastern United States. For more information about the Company, visit Fred's website at www.fredsinc.com.

Comments in this news release that are not historical facts are forward-looking statements that involve risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those projected in the forward-looking statements. These risks and uncertainties include, but are not limited to, general economic trends, changes in consumer demand or purchase patterns, delays or interruptions in the flow of merchandise between the Company's distribution centers and its stores or between the Company's suppliers and same, a disruption in the Company's data processing services, costs and delays in acquiring or developing new store sites, and other contingencies discussed in the Company's Securities and Exchange Commission filings. Fred's undertakes no obligation to release revisions to these forward-looking statements to reflect events or circumstances after the date hereof or to reflect the occurrence of unforeseen events, except as required to be reported under the rules and regulations of the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Fred's Inc.
Jerry A. Shore, 901-362-3733, Ext. 2217
Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer

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