ISSAQUAH, WA-Woes at other retailers are helping Costco Wholesale Corp. expand its merchandise mix and could help store growth, the company said at its second quarter conference call.

As some apparel merchants struggle, Costco is finding greater choice of branded merchandise for its own stores, said Richard A. Galanti, executive VP and CFO. And a slowdown in store growth by other companies also may provide new locations.

“Our nonfood buyers are seeing more availability in branded jeans and women’s apparel, and even on the home furnishings side,” Galanti said. “[And] we’re seeing more [real estate] opportunities of late as some retailers have dropped out of sites and some tracts of land have flipped back to the bank.”

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