AutoZone to focus on sales to repair chains as retail drags

(Reuters) – AutoZone Inc (AZO), the largest U.S. auto parts retailer, reported a better-than-expected quarterly profit as it focuses on its fast-growing business that sells to auto repair chains to offset weakness in its main do-it-yourself market. AutoZone’s shares rose as much as 6 percent to a record high on Tuesday after the company reported a 7 percent jump in profit, helped by a cooler-than-usual autumn and storms that encouraged owners to service their vehicles ahead of winter. The commercial repair business, or “do-it-for-me”, is already a major driver for AutoZone rivals such as O’Reilly Automotive Inc (ORLY), which gets more than 40 percent of its revenue from auto service providers. Memphis, Tennessee-based AutoZone is still playing catch up.


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