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 HARVEY, Ill., Nov. 17 /PRNewswire/ -- Bliss & Laughlin Industries Inc. (NASDAQ: BLIS) said today that net revenues for the fourth fiscal quarter ended Sept. 30, 1993, rose 11 percent to $34,569,000 from $31,132,000 in the year-ago quarter. In the 1993 fourth quarter, the company experienced a net loss of $1,685,000, or 42 cents per share, compared to net income of $329,000, 8 cents per share, in the similar 1992 period.
 For the fiscal year ended Sept. 30, 1993, net revenues were $136,923,000, up 13 percent from $121,677,000 a year earlier. Net loss for the 1993 fiscal year was $4,219,000, or $1.06 per share, compared to net income of $297,000, or 7 cents per share, in the 1992 fiscal year.
 Gregory H. Parker, chairman and chief executive officer, said the quarterly and year-end results were negatively affected by several non- recurring events. Major non-recurring expenses were related to professional services and employee training for a new state-of-the-art business operating system, which provides complete integration of all business functions. The system will be fully operative by late 1994 and will result in world-class customer service at reduced cost. Expenses of approximately $260,000 in the fourth fiscal quarter and $520,000 for the 12-month period were primarily attributable to this new system. A portion of the expenditure was incurred in the development of an Activity-Based Costing system, which is providing essential basic data to enable the company to isolate and act upon both problems and opportunities within its product/customer mix.
 During the fourth fiscal quarter, the company elected to implement the provisions of Financial Accounting Standards Board Statement Number 106: Employers' Accounting for Post-Retirement Benefits other than Pensions. SFAS No. 106 requires the company to reflect the cost of post-retirement benefits that may eventually be paid. The cumulative effect of this accounting change will be recorded through a restatement of the first-quarter earnings with a non-cash charge of $1,789,000. The company will restate the previous three quarters to reflect the current- year expense of $229,000.
 Also included in results for the fiscal year were expenses of approximately $760,000 to write down obsolete inventory and adjust for inventory valuations.
 Competitive pricing pressures from domestic competition and increased foreign imports continued to force margin compression. Parker noted that pricing competition should begin to abate as the market continues to improve. In keeping with this trend, the company instituted a price increase on Nov. 1, 1993, which was competitive with industry increases, following raw material increases in the same time period and during the fourth fiscal quarter.
 Parker said, "Due to improved market conditions and increasing lead times, we are currently building our finished stock inventories to meet forecasted customer demand in the first calendar quarter of 1994."
 The company's largest manufacturing plant in Harvey, Ill., has completed qualifications for the Ford Motor Company Q1 Preferred Quality award. It is making preparations for a Q1 presentation to the Ford Motor Company's nominating committee in December, and expects formal notification of the award in early 1994. This award recognizes suppliers for achieving a level of excellence and for implementing systems for continuous improvement in meeting and exceeding customers' needs and expectations. The company's Cartersville, Ga., plant received the award on July 21, 1993.
 Karl H. Reitz, vice president of Wire and Wire Products Group, Stelco Inc., has been elected to the Bliss & Laughlin Industries' board of directors to fill the unexpired term of Leslie C. McLean who resigned.
 Headquartered in Harvey, Bliss & Laughlin Industries inc. is a manufacturer of cold finished steel bars, producing the widest range of grades, sizes and shapes in the industry. Its common shares are traded on the NASDAQ National Market System.
 (In thousands except per-share data)
 For the Three Months Ended Sept. 30,
 1993 1992
 Net sales $34,569 $31,132
 Income (loss) before
 income taxes (1,550) 616
 Income tax (provision) benefit (135) (287)
 Net income (loss) (1,685) 329
 Net income (loss) per share (.42) .08
 Average shares outstanding 3,970 3,970
 For the 12 Months Ended Sept. 30,
 1993 1992
 Net sales $136,923 $121,677
 Income (loss) before income
 taxes and cumulative effect
 of change in accounting
 principle (1,836) 654
 Income tax (provision) benefit (594) (357)
 Net income (loss) before
 cumulative effect of change
 in accounting principle (2,430) 297
 Cumulative effect of change
 in accounting principle (1,789) 0
 Net income (loss) (4,219) 297
 Net income (loss) per share
 before cumulative effect of change
 in accounting principle (.61) .07
 Cumulative effect of change in
 accounting principle (.45) ---
 Net income (loss) per share (1.06) .07
 Average shares outstanding 3,970 3,970
 -0- 11/17/93
 /CONTACT: George W. Fleck, vice president and CFO of Bliss & Laughlin Industries, 312-264-1800; or Leslie Tolan of Doremus & Company, 312-321-1377, for Bliss & Laughlin Industries/

CO: Bliss & Laughlin Industries Inc. ST: Illinois IN: SU: ERN

ML-KR -- DE015 -- 5576 11/17/93 14:38 EST
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Nov 17, 1993

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