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BANTA REPORTS FIRST QUARTER EARNINGS

 BANTA REPORTS FIRST QUARTER EARNINGS
 MENASHA, Wis., April 22 /PRNewswire/ -- Banta Corporation


(NASDAQ:BNTA) today reported first quarter results that were significantly above those of the same period last year.
 For the three months ended March 1992, net earnings were $7.3 million, 41 percent above the $5.2 million earned during the first quarter of 1991. Earnings per share were 55 cents, 38 percent higher than the 40 cents reported for the same period in 1991.
 Sales were $152.5 million, 10 percent higher than the $138.4 million reported for the first quarter of 1991.
 Chairman Calvin W. Aurand, Jr. says all of the company's product segments performed better than the comparable period last year. He notes the top performer for the quarter was KCS Industries Inc., the Milwaukee-based subsidiary that manufactures point-of-purchase signs and displays, product labels, and postage stamps. "KCS Industries achieved market share growth in all of its product areas, generating significant sales and earnings increases over the same period in 1991," explains Aurand. He added that this year's quarter included a full three months of postage stamp volume compared to a start-up quarter in 1991.
 The company reported its softcover book segment realized increased volume from both general books and software manuals. 1992's first quarter included the results of Bushman Press, Inc., Provo, Utah, which was purchased in July 1991. The first six months of 1992 also benefits from the educational adoption process as publisher programs are readied for second quarter submission to state curriculum approval committees.
 "Consumer catalogs showed considerable improvement over 1991's first quarter, benefiting from market share gains and more market stability than last year," says Aurand. "The Direct Marketing Group balanced manufacturing activity between its two plants and experienced greater efficiency, however volume was slightly lower."
 Banta's special-interest magazine operations continued to increase their share of the short- to medium-run publications market during the first quarter. The single-use products subsidiary further expanded its penetration into the medical, food service and specialty film markets.
 Aurand says he is optimistic about the remainder of 1992, although the degree of optimism depends on the U.S. economy. "As the economy and consumer confidence improves, we expect the positive results that occurred across our product lines during the first quarter to continue throughout 1992."
 Banta Corporation is one of the nation's leading graphic arts companies, offering diverse printing and graphic services. It serves publishers of educational and general books special-interest magazines, consumer and business catalogs, and direct marketing materials. Its other businesses offer prepress services, multimedia and software packages, point-of-purchase materials, and single-use products. Banta Corporation is a Fortune 500 company.
 BANTA CORPORATION
 Three Months (13 Weeks) (13 Weeks)
 Ended March 28, 1992 1992 1991
 Sales $152,530,000 $138,389,000
 Net earnings $ 7,293,000 $ 5,172,000
 Earnings per share $ .55 $ .40
 Average shares outstanding 13,227,160 12,930,662
 -0- 4/22/92
 /CONTACT: Gerald A. Henseler, senior vice president (analysts), or Mark A. Fleming, corporate communications (media) both of Banta Corporation, 414-722-7777/
 (BNTA) CO: Banta Corporation ST: Wisconsin IN: SU:


CG -- CL008 -- 1215 04/22/92 11:30 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Apr 22, 1992
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