The Andersons, Inc. 4th Qtr. Income Up $1.0 Million, $1.7 Million for Full Year

2000 Full-Year EPS $1.34 vs. $1.03 in 1999

PRNewswire
MAUMEE, Ohio
Jan 31, 2001

The Andersons, Inc. , today announced net income of $4.4 million, or $0.59 per diluted share, for the fourth quarter, $1.0 million higher than the $3.4 million, or $0.43 per diluted share, in the comparable period last year. Included in these fourth quarter 2000 results was the impact of a non-recurring gain resulting from an insurance settlement. Total revenues of $324.0 million for the period were 7.9 percent lower than the $351.7 million reported for the fourth quarter of 1999.

Earnings of $1.34 per diluted share for the full year were $0.31, or 30 percent, higher than the $1.03 realized in 1999. Nineteen cents of this improvement was attributed to the insurance settlement. Full-year net income rose to $10.1 million on revenues of $970.3 million. In 1999, the company had revenues of $1.01 billion and net income of $8.4 million. The company has repurchased shares on the open market from time to time and presently has about 7.4 million shares outstanding.

Agriculture

The company's Agriculture Group operates grain elevators, fertilizer distribution terminals and farm centers in Ohio, Michigan, Indiana and Illinois. Collectively, these facilities annually handle more than 150 million bushels of grain and about 1.3 million tons of dry and liquid agricultural fertilizer products.

With grain inventories in the U.S. remaining relatively high in 2000, the group's grain business added storage capacity at four locations and continued to generate significantly increased earnings. The wholesale fertilizer business also achieved income growth for the year. Contributing to this improvement were a rebound from the year-earlier drop in gross margins and the full-year operation of a business in Seymour, Indiana, acquired in mid-1999. During the year, the group announced several e-commerce developments, including licensing agreements to market its Crop Revenue Profiler™ software to farm operators throughout the midwest and an investment in Rooster.com(SM), an Internet-based agricultural marketplace recently launched by several large agribusiness companies. Despite lower total revenues that resulted from low grain prices, the group achieved significant income growth in the fourth quarter and the full year.

Rail

The Rail Group leases and markets railroad cars and locomotives. It also repairs railcars and operates a custom steel fabrication business. The group's railcar marketing segment has grown dramatically in the past few years and now controls a fleet of more than 4,800 railcars and locomotives that are leased to shippers, railroads and fleet owners in a wide range of industries in the U.S. and Canada.

While revenues and operating income have grown steadily over the past five years, a general slowdown in demand for many types of rail equipment caused the group to pursue primarily short-term leasing opportunities in 2000 rather than making car sales or entering into long-term leasing commitments. Although these market conditions caused a decline in the group's revenues and operating income both for the fourth quarter and full year, this business remains solidly profitable and is a significant contributor to the company's net income.

Processing

The Processing Group manufactures turf and ornamental plant fertilizer and control products. With a national logistics infrastructure, it serves major retailers throughout the country as well as golf course and professional lawn- care markets. In mid-2000, the company acquired the U.S. professional turf business of The Scotts Co., thereby positioning The Andersons as the industry leader in premium fertilizer products for golf courses and other professional turf care markets. The group also produces corncob-based chemical and feed- ingredient carriers, animal bedding, cat litter and ice-melter products.

With the expanded business, revenues continued to grow significantly during the fourth quarter and were about 26 percent above 1999 for the year. However, the group's operating results for the fourth quarter and full year were below the prior year, in part because of acquisition-related expenses but more significantly because of unfavorable weather patterns during the key selling season and start-up expenses associated with several recent investments to increase production capacity.

Retail

This group operates six large stores in Ohio. With a theme of More For Your Home™, these stores offer traditional home center merchandise including hardware, plumbing, electrical and building supplies, but also feature indoor and outdoor garden centers, extensive lines of housewares and domestics, automotive supplies, pet supplies, sporting goods and a unique specialty food offering. The group also operates a lawn and garden equipment sales and service center.

The group rang up record-setting sales in the last few days before Christmas. Total fourth quarter and full-year sales were up 5.9 and 1.6 percent, respectively, and gross margins remained strong. With improved efficiency and lower operating costs, this group achieved significant operating income growth for the quarter and year. Excluding revenues generated during the fifty-third week, an extra reporting period occurring every seventh year, sales were relatively flat year-to-year.

Company

According to President and Chief Executive Officer Mike Anderson, "Overall, 2000 was a good year for The Andersons. Looking forward, our increased grain storage capacity, greatly expanded presence in the professional turf products market and growing railcar fleet all hold promise for continued earnings growth."

Recently, the company paid a quarterly cash dividend of 6.5 cents per share to shareholders of record as of January 2, 2001. The company is authorized by its board of directors to continue to repurchase shares from time to time.

The Andersons will host a webcast on February 1, 2001 at 11:00 A.M. EST, to discuss the calendar 2000 results and outlook for 2001. The webcast can be accessed through the company's website http://www.andersonsinc.com/ under the heading "Financial Information" or at http://www.videonewswire.com/ANDERSONS/020101/ .

The Andersons, Inc. is a respected leader and prominent regional player in grain merchandising. Its strong position in this basic business has allowed the company to diversify into other agribusiness operations, railcar leasing, turf care product manufacturing and general merchandise retailing. The company has been in operation since 1947.

This release contains forward-looking statements. These statements involve risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially, including, without limitation, economic, weather and regulatory conditions, competition, and the risk factors set forth from time to time in the company's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

  The Andersons, Inc. is located on the Internet at www.andersonsinc.com .

                           The Andersons, Inc.
                    Consolidated Statements of Income


                                   Three Months ended       Year ended
                                      December 31          December 31
  (in thousands, except for per
   share amounts)                      2000      1999      2000        1999

  Sales and merchandising revenues $323,955  $351,673  $970,289  $1,010,678
  Cost of sales and merchandising
   revenues                         278,943   309,436   813,326     860,715
  Gross profit                       45,012    42,237   156,963     149,963

  Operating, administrative and
   general expenses                  38,762    36,459   137,839     132,682
  Interest expense                    3,590     2,832    11,829       9,517
  Other income / Gains:
    Other income                      1,034     1,564     3,989       4,195
    Gain on involuntary conversion    2,088         -     2,088           -
    Gain on sale of business              -         -       992           -
  Income before income taxes          5,782     4,510    14,364      11,959
  Income taxes                        1,409     1,122     4,286       3,580
  Net income                         $4,373    $3,388   $10,078      $8,379

  Per common share:
    Basic earnings                    $0.59     $0.43     $1.34       $1.05
    Diluted earnings                  $0.59     $0.43     $1.34       $1.03
    Dividends paid                    $0.06     $0.05     $0.24       $0.20

  Weighted average shares
   outstanding-basic                  7,374     7,789     7,507       7,996
  Weighted average shares
   outstanding-diluted                7,398     7,801     7,525       8,098


                             The Andersons, Inc.
                         Consolidated Balance Sheets

                                             December 31       December 31
          (in thousands)                         2000              1999

  Assets
  Current assets:
    Cash and cash equivalents                    $13,138           $25,614
    Accounts receivable:
      Trade accounts and notes receivable (net)   49,769            49,880
      Margin deposits                              5,706             1,339
        Total                                     55,475            51,219
    Inventories                                  209,706           161,802
    Railcars available for sale                   12,719            16,521
    Deferred income taxes                          3,444             5,641
    Prepaid expenses and other current assets      8,342             7,728
  Total current assets                           302,824           268,525

  Other assets:
    Notes receivable (net) and other assets        8,598             4,640
    Investments in and advances to affiliates      1,422               954
      Total                                       10,020             5,594
  Railcar assets leased to others                 22,281             7,112
  Property, plant and equipment (net)             98,071            95,545
    Total                                       $433,196          $376,776

  Liabilities and shareholders' equity
  Current liabilities:
    Notes payable                                $71,300           $45,000
    Accounts payable for grain                    67,468            68,883
    Other accounts payable                        84,045            65,079
    Accrued expenses                              15,625            17,465
    Current maturities of long-term debt           9,126             4,159
  Total current liabilities                      247,564           200,586

  Deferred income                                  3,166             4,026
  Pension and postretirement benefits              3,684             3,255
  Long-term debt                                  80,159            74,127
  Deferred income taxes                            8,787             8,742
  Minority interest                                    -             1,235
  Shareholders' equity                            89,836            84,805
    Total                                       $433,196          $376,776

                    The Andersons, Inc. - Segment Data


  Quarter ended December 31, 2000        Agriculture   Processing     Rail
  Revenues from external customers        $246,014       $18,022     $6,063
  Other income                                 386            65         13
  Gain on involuntary conversion             2,088             -          -
    Total                                 $248,488       $18,087     $6,076

  Operating income (loss)                   $7,872       $(2,994)     $(167)

  Quarter ended December 31, 1999
  Revenues from external customers        $253,613       $12,057    $32,344
  Other income                                 241            82         52
    Total                                 $253,854       $12,139    $32,396

  Operating income (loss)                   $3,540       $(1,601)      $945

  Year ended December 31, 2000
  Revenues from external customers        $648,410      $107,434    $28,139
  Other income                               1,204           358        233
  Gain on sale of business                       -             -          -
  Gain on involuntary conversion             2,088             -          -
    Total                                 $651,702      $107,792    $28,372

  Operating income (loss)                  $14,301       $(3,470)    $1,003

  Year ended December 31, 1999
  Revenues from external customers        $673,523       $84,990    $60,082
  Other income                                 761           470        160
    Total                                 $674,284       $85,460    $60,242

  Operating income (loss)                   $6,054          $(95)    $4,225


                      The Andersons, Inc. - Segment Data

  Quarter ended December 31, 2000           Retail         Other     Total
  Revenues from external customers         $53,856            $-   $323,955
  Other income                                 150           420      1,034
  Gain on involuntary conversion                 -             -      2,088
    Total                                  $54,006          $420   $327,077

  Operating income (loss)                   $1,900         $(829)    $5,782

  Quarter ended December 31, 1999
  Revenues from external customers         $50,837        $2,822   $351,673
  Other income                                 133         1,056      1,564
    Total                                  $50,970        $3,878   $353,237

  Operating income (loss)                   $1,495          $131     $4,510

  Year ended December 31, 2000
  Revenues from external customers        $183,817        $2,489   $970,289
  Other income                                 611         1,583      3,989
  Gain on sale of business                       -           992        992
  Gain on involuntary conversion                 -             -      2,088
    Total                                 $184,428        $5,064   $977,358

  Operating income (loss)                   $3,246         $(716)   $14,364

  Year ended December 31, 1999
  Revenues from external customers        $180,887       $11,196 $1,010,678
  Other income                                 435         2,369      4,195
    Total                                 $181,322       $13,565 $1,014,873

  Operating income (loss)                   $2,645         $(870)   $11,959

SOURCE: The Andersons, Inc.

Contact: Gary Smith of The Andersons, Inc., 419-891-6417


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