Publix, still the No. 1 grocery chain in Florida by market share, continued its consistent growth by racking up $30.6 billion in revenues in 2014, a 5.7 percent uptick from its $28.9 billion of 2013.
The Lakeland-based company, the country's largest employee-owned supermarket business, also reported fourth-quarter sales in 2014 of $7.9 billion, a 6.9 percent increase from last year's $7.4 billion.
"I'm extremely pleased our performance and improvements in the stock market resulted in a significant increase in our stock price," Publix CEO Ed Crenshaw said in a statement. "Our associates, the owners of Publix, continue to deliver exceptional customer service, the key to our success."
Net earnings for 2014 were $1.74 billion, compared with $1.65 billion for 2013. And net earnings for the fourth quarter of 2014 were $453.3 million, compared with $422 million in 2013.
Publix, ranked at No. 104 on the list of Fortune 500 companies, employs 168,500 people. A majority of them own shares of Publix stock. As of March 1, Publix's stock price increased from $33.80 per share to $39.05 per share. Company shares are not publicly traded and can only be purchased by current Publix associates and directors.
Although concentrated in Florida, Publix operates 1,095 supermarkets and has expanded into other states, including Georgia, Alabama, South Carolina, Tennessee and, most notably of late, North Carolina.
Publix recently fell from its No. 1 national industry ranking for the first time based on the American Customer Satisfaction Index. But it remains on Fortune's 2015 list of the "world's most admired companies."