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CELEX GROUP COMPLETES RECORD YEAR; SALES RISE 131 PERCENT; LARGE GAINS SEEN FOR CURRENT YEAR

 CHICAGO, July 21 /PRNewswire/ -- CELEX Group, Inc., the publicly held specialty retailer and catalog company that creates and markets proprietary products for business and personal motivation, today reported sales of $13,274,480 and net income of $1,605,016 for the year ended April 30, 1993. These results compare with prior year sales of $5,736,992 and net income of $101,801. Earnings per share increased to 70 cents from 6 cents in fiscal 1992.
 Fourth quarter sales were $3,418,824 with a net loss of $40,493. This compares with prior year sales of $1,707,273 and a loss of $70,341. The final quarter's loss is the result of management's decision to double the size of the warehouse and shipping facilities, and hire and train additional staff to support anticipated growth.
 All Distribution Channels Contribute
 Mac Anderson, chairman and president, attributed the growth in sales to three key factors:
 -- Expansion of the catalog and direct mail division that
 resulted in a substantial increase in sales. More
 specifically, the company had great success mailing to
 targeted acquired lists in addition to its own house
 list. In the past year, the customer database grew
 from 40,000 to 100,000 names.
 -- Opening new company-owned Successories retail stores
 during the recent year, bringing the total to 17 stores
 from only two a year ago. Going forward, the company
 has developed a smaller store (700-1,000 square feet) for
 enclosed malls with advanced architecture and fixturing
 concepts. New kiosks also will feature these same
 innovative design elements. The first of these stores
 is scheduled for opening in October 1993.
 -- The successful launch of a franchise program, with 15
 Successories franchises awarded from a prospective list
 of 700 applicants. In the future, the franchise
 program will be offered in markets with populations
 under 1,000,000. Major markets are being reserved for
 company-owned stores.
 The 131 percent increase in sales resulted in a $1,503,215 increase in net income for a 11.3 percent net profit margin. "We worked hard to maintain our gross profit margin and control our overhead costs. These efforts paid off in converting sales dollars to bottom-line net income," Anderson explained.
 Capital Additions Finance Growth
 To further strengthen the company's financial position, CELEX completed in June 1993 a private placement offering restricted shares of common stock that raised $2,232,000. The company is currently negotiating to raise an additional $3,000,000 through the sale of restricted shares of common stock. As a result of these two transactions, CELEX will issue 548,000 new shares of restricted common stock, bringing the total shares outstanding to 2,585,460. Stockholders' equity will increase to $8,086,397, or $3.13 per share, from $2,854,397 at April 30, 1993.
 This additional equity of $5,232,000 will be used to finance:
 a) New product development
 b) New company-owned Successories stores
 c) Higher inventory levels to support anticipated sales
 growth and same-day shipping goals
 d) New equipment to automate warehouse and shipping
 facilities.
 Outlook for More Substantial Growth
 Addressing the current fiscal year, Anderson said: "Our sales budget for this year is $25 million. This is an 88 percent increase in sales over the recent year. To attain this goal, we anticipate 50 percent of our sales to be generated from catalog and direct mail demand, 40 percent from Successories stores and franchisees, and 10 percent from direct sales to corporations and others.
 "Our emphasis during the first quarter is on building the infrastructure to support and control this increased sales volume. This will result in lower first-quarter earnings but provide the base for increased earnings in the following three quarters," according to Anderson. "Our projection of after-tax income for the current fiscal year to end April 1994 is $2.9 million, an 81 percent increase over fiscal 1993," he concluded.
 NASDAQ Listing Expected Soon
 The company is currently completing its application for listing on the NASDAQ Stock Exchange and expects approval by late August or early September, Anderson said.
 CELEX GROUP, INC.
 CONDENSED CONSOLIDATED STATEMENT OF OPERATING RESULTS
 Fourth Quarter Ended April 30,
 1992 1993
 Net Sales $1,707,273 $3,418,824
 Cost of Goods Sold 590,403 845,543
 Operating Expenses 1,047,981 2,627,438
 Operating Profit (Loss) 68,889 (54,157)
 Interest Expense - Net (781) 44,142
 Other Income (Expense) (134,749) 57,806
 Income Before Income Taxes
 and Extraordinary Credits (66,641) (40,493)
 Income Taxes 30,000 (49,000)
 Income Before Extra. Credits (96,641) 8,507
 Gain on Sale of Investment
 Tax Benefit of Net Operating
 Loss Carry Forward 26,300 (49,000)
 Net Income $(70,341) $(40,493)
 Earnings Per Share $(0.04) $(0.02)
 Years Ended April 30,
 1992 1993
 Net Sales $5,736,992 $13,274,480
 Cost of Goods Sold 2,260,687 4,435,343
 Operating Expenses 7,568,100 7,105,634
 Operating Profit (Loss) (91,795) 1,733,503
 Interest Expense - Net 126,234 150,361
 Other Income (Expense) (6,470) 21,874
 Income Before Income Taxes
 and Extraordinary Credits (224,499) 1,605,016
 Income Taxes 30,000 580,000
 Income Before Extra. Credits (254,499) 1,025,016
 Gain on Sale of Investment 330,000
 Tax Benefit of Net Operating
 Loss Carry Forward 26,300 580,000
 Net Income $101,801 $1,605,016
 Earnings Per Share $0.06 $0.70
 CONDENSED CONSOLIDATED BALANCE SHEETS
 AT APRIL 30, 1993
 1993 1992
 Current Assets $4,918,392 $1,430,129
 Property & Equipment - Net 1,258,007 447,747
 Other Assets 879,211 703,468
 Total Assets 7,055,610 2,581,344
 Current Liabilities 3,583,273 1,258,834
 Long-Term Debt 617,940 552,754
 Stockholders' Equity 2,854,397 769,756
 -0- 7/21/93
 /CONTACT: Mac Anderson, president and CEO of CELEX Group, 708-953-8440, or James Tolan of O'Connor Biro & Associates, 708-498-2284, for CELEX Group/


CO: CELEX Group, Inc. ST: Illinois IN: REA SU: ERN

PS -- NY041 -- 3894 07/21/93 11:19 EDT
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Date:Jul 21, 1993
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