Cabela’s Inc. told analysts at Imperial Capital Global Opportunities Tele-Conference last week that it can roll out 1 million new square feet of new retail space a year from 2014 to 2017 without degrading its customer experience.

“In 2009-2010 we were still in the process of really improving our base retail profitability,” CAB’s EVP and CFO Ralph Castner explained. “We had this new, exciting next-generation store format, but we wanted to be careful as we rolled it out, so we really rolled out just one store in each 2009 and 2010. Beginning in 2011 and 2012 and into 2013 and 2014, we really accelerated the number of square feet, so we are at the point today that we think about 1 million square feet per year is the appropriate number to roll out. We think at 1 million square feet per year from 2014-2017; we can still deliver on that expectation in the store.”

In 2014, CAB plans to open eight of its next-generation stores in Greenville, SC; Anchorage; Christiana, DE; Woodbury, MN; Cheektowaga, NY; Tualatin, OR Bristol, VA. and Acworth, GA. Plans also call for three new Outpost stores in Augusta, GA; Lubbock, TX; and Missoula, MT. In Canada, it will  try to open three stores including Edmonton, Alberta, and Barrie, Ontario.


“If we build any faster than that, we are afraid we might compromise that experience in the store,” said Castner. “So, one million square feet feels like the right number probably from 2014 through 2017.”