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CURTICE BURNS REPORTS THIRD QUARTER F/94 SALES AND EARNINGS; RESTRUCTURING, VEGETABLE PRICING LED EARNINGS INCREASE

 ROCHESTER, N.Y., April 19 /PRNewswire/ -- Curtice Burns Foods (AMEX: CBI), a food processor, today reported third quarter fiscal 1994 net earnings of $1,651,000 ($.19 per share) compared to $707,000 ($.08 per share) one year ago, a 134 percent increase. There were no material non-recurring gains or losses in this quarter.
 Net earnings for the nine months fiscal 1994 year-to-date were $9,559,000 ($1.11 per share) compared to $4,197,000 ($.49 per share) in the same period last year. Included in the fiscal 1994 year-to-date results are the following non-recurring gains and losses: in fiscal '94, a gain equivalent to $.38 per share related primarily to the sale of the oats business, and a one-time charge equivalent to $.06 per share to reflect a tax rate change; in fiscal '93, a loss equivalent to $.07 per share related to the sale of Lucca. Excluding non-recurring gains or losses, net earnings from operations for the nine months fiscal 1994 year-to-date increased 41 percent over the prior year, to $6,795,000 (the equivalent of $.79 per share) versus $4,826,000 (the equivalent of $.56 per share).
 Net sales declined 10.3 percent in the third quarter, to $189,455,000 from $211,102,000 the previous year and 3.6 percent year-to- date, to $642,791,000 from $666,625,000. In both of these periods, the net sales decline was due primarily to divested businesses. Net sales in the remaining businesses increased, principally because of an increase in vegetable sales.
 "Our strong third quarter performance was principally driven by two factors," said Curtice Burns President and CEO J. William Petty. "We successfully completed the restructuring program announced at the end of fiscal '93, and secondly, the national short crop on commodity vegetables placed Curtice Burns in a favorable pricing position.
 "Our restructuring focused on eliminating unprofitable or non- strategic businesses as a means of maximizing shareholder value. In November 1993, we sold the oats business of National Oats, consolidated the popcorn business of National Oats into another division, and sold the Hiland Potato Chip Company. This past February, Oberto Sausage Company purchased certain assets and assumed certain liabilities of the Curtice Burns Meat Snacks Division and is contractually obligated to purchase the remaining assets at the end of a one-year period. This restructuring has had the positive impact on our earnings which was anticipated at the time it was initiated.
 "Poor weather conditions in the Midwest during calendar 1993 combined with good growing conditions experienced by our Comstock Michigan Fruit Division in the Northeast created an opportunity for improved pricing and margins. This combination of our adequate supply and an aggressive pricing strategy has had a positive impact on earnings.
 "Our Curtice Burns team is justifiably proud of the results for this quarter and the entire fiscal year to date. Food processors across the country are going through a difficult period, and it is primarily due to the focus, commitment and creativity of the entire Curtice Burns team that we are reporting this positive earnings trend."
 Curtice Burns Foods processes and markets 21 product lines of regional branded, private label and foodservice products through seven autonomously managed divisions located throughout the United States and Western Canada.
 CURTICE BURNS FOODS
 CONSOLIDATED STATEMENT OF INCOME
 (unaudited)
 ($000 except share data)
 Quarter Ended Nine Months Ended
 3/26/94 3/26/93 3/26/94 3/26/93
 Net Sales $189,455 $211,102 $642,791 $666,625
 Earnings from Division
 Operations $ 5,647 $ 2,262 $ 23,179 $ 15,590
 Non-Recurring Gains/
 (Losses) $ --- $ --- $ 8,114 $ (2,152)
 Income Before Taxes $ 3,130 $ 1,408 $ 16,303 $ 7,371
 Net Income $ 1,651 $ 707 $ 9,559 $ 4,197
 Net Income Per Share
 (See Below) $ .19 $ .08 $ 1.11 $ .49
 Average Number of
 Shares Outstanding 8,643,332 8,614,558 8,638,971 8,594,827
 Breakdown of Net Income per Share
 Earnings from Operations $.19 $.08 $.79 $.56
 Non-Recurring Gains/
 (Losses) --- --- .32(A) (.07)
 Total As Reported $.19 $.08 $1.11 $.49
 (A) -- Includes both a non-recurring gain of $8,114,000 ($3,244,000 after tax) or the equivalent of $.38 per share related primarily to the sale of the oats business in the second quarter, and a non-recurring charge of $480,000 or the equivalent of $.06 per share in the first quarter to adjust deferred taxes to the higher rates legislated by Congress under Statement of Financial Accounting Standards No. 109.
 -0- 4/19/94
 /CONTACT: Bea Slizewski of Curtice Burns Foods, 716-264-3133./
 (CBI)


CO: Curtice Burns Foods ST: New York IN: FOD SU: ERN

KL-TJ -- CL040 -- 7142 04/19/94 16:35 EDT
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Date:Apr 19, 1994
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