The Andersons, Inc. Reports Record 1st Qtr. Earnings
EPS 22 Cents vs. 11 Cents Loss Last Year Improvement in Processing, Rail & Retail Segments
Apr 23, 2002
The Andersons, Inc.
The Andersons has four operating groups: Agriculture, Processing, Rail and Retail.
The Agriculture Group's grain business achieved higher operating income from the sale and storage of grain during the first quarter of 2002. Its fertilizer business lagged year-earlier results, though. Fertilizer volumes were somewhat lower as wet conditions this year prevented the start of early- season fieldwork by farmers in the region, and margins, having benefited from an unusual run-up in nitrogen prices last year, returned to more normal levels. As a result, the group's revenues and income, while still quite substantial, were below first quarter 2001 levels.
The Processing Group achieved a significant turnaround during the first three months of 2002. Despite lower volumes and revenues caused by the weather-related curtailment of early-season lawn care activities, gross margins, adversely impacted by ingredient cost increases in 2001, improved. In addition, intensive efforts throughout 2001 to reduce costs and improve operating efficiencies resulted in lower overall expenses for the first three months of 2002. As a result, the group achieved a $2.7 million bottom-line improvement for the quarter.
The Rail Group similarly overcame a year-earlier first quarter operating loss. Because of steady improvement in its fleet utilization rate, the group achieved a positive operating income for the period. Although railcar values and monthly lease rates remain at or near recent cyclical lows, the group has a growing number of cars in active lease service and a declining number of idle cars in its fleet.
The Retail Group achieved a 7.2 percent increase in same-store sales for the quarter. In addition, average gross margins were up slightly and expenses were below year-earlier levels. As a result, the group's first quarter operating loss was significantly lower this year.
President and Chief Executive Officer Mike Anderson stated "I'm really proud of our first-quarter performance this year, with net income and earnings per share both establishing new records for The Andersons. Our EBITDA of $8.5 million for the quarter was also very strong, up $2.3 million from the first quarter of 2001."
"Looking forward, we expect that grain storage income and fertilizer margins may both be down this year, leaving Agriculture Group income more in line with the most recent three-year average. We anticipate continued bottom- line performance improvement in all three of our non-agricultural businesses. Assuming reasonable general economic conditions for the balance of the year and a normal planting and growing season, our 2002 earnings may exceed last year's EPS by up to ten percent."
The Andersons will host a webcast on Wednesday, April 24, 2002 at 11:00 A.M. EDT, to discuss its first quarter performance and full-year outlook. The webcast can be accessed under the heading "Financial Information" on its website at http://www.andersonsinc.com/ or at http://www.videonewswire.com/event.asp?id=4168 .
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 FINANCIAL TABLES FOLLOW . . . The Andersons, Inc. Consolidated Statements of Operations Three Months ended March 31 (in thousands, except for per share amounts) 2002 2001 Sales and merchandising revenues $214,831 $218,007 Cost of sales and merchandising revenues 178,811 182,892 Gross profit 36,020 35,115 Operating, administrative and general expenses 31,787 33,351 Interest expense 2,713 3,614 Other income / gains: Other income 792 584 Gain on involuntary conversion - 338 Income before income taxes and cumulative effect of accounting change 2,312 (928) Income taxes 703 (298) Income (loss) before cumulative effect of accounting change 1,609 (630) Cumulative effect of accounting change, net of income tax benefit - (185) Net income (loss) $1,609 $(815) Per common share: Basic earnings (loss) $0.22 $(0.11) Diluted earnings (loss) $0.22 $(0.11) Dividends paid $0.065 $0.065 Weighted average shares outstanding- basic 7,288 7,371 Weighted average shares outstanding- diluted 7,393 7,371 Depreciation and amortization $3,512 $3,539 The Andersons, Inc. Consolidated Balance Sheets (Unaudited) March 31 December 31 March 31 (in thousands) 2002 2001 2001 Assets Current assets: Cash and cash equivalents $9,592 $5,697 $6,246 Accounts receivable (net) and margin deposits 72,826 54,836 71,570 Inventories 238,903 238,291 213,424 Other current assets 24,271 27,849 28,727 Total current assets 345,592 326,673 319,967 Other assets 6,385 6,300 7,882 Railcar assets leased to others (net) 29,247 26,102 26,690 Property, plant and equipment (net) 94,851 95,001 96,945 $476,075 $454,076 $451,484 Liabilities and shareholders' equity Current liabilities: Notes payable $128,200 $82,600 $114,600 Other current liabilities 143,775 169,068 155,275 Total current liabilities 271,975 251,668 269,875 Deferred items, long-term liabilities and minority interest 15,244 16,158 15,800 Long-term debt 92,269 91,316 78,251 Shareholders' equity 96,587 94,934 87,558 $476,075 $454,076 $451,484 Segment Data Quarter ended March 31, 2002 Agriculture Processing Rail Retail Other Total Revenues from external customers $134,840 $40,981 $4,160 $34,850 $ - $214,831 Other income 267 123 3 119 280 792 $135,107 $41,104 $4,163 $34,969 $ 280 $215,623 Operating income (loss)$ 2,524 $ 2,418 $ 380 $(1,739) $(1,271) $ 2,312 Quarter ended March 31, 2001 Revenues from external customers $137,512 $42,246 $5,746 $32,503 $ - $218,007 Other income 188 96 11 135 154 584 Gain on involuntary conversion 338 - - - - 338 $138,038 $42,342 $5,757 $32,638 $ 154 $218,929 Operating income (loss) $ 3,329 $ (243) $ (295) $(2,993) $ (726) $ (928)
SOURCE: The Andersons, Inc.
Contact: Gary Smith of The Andersons, Inc., +1-419-891-6417