HUNTINGDON INTERNATIONAL HOLDINGS ANNOUNCES
RESULTS FOR YEAR ENDING SEPT. 30, 1991
HUNTINGDON, England, Nov. 19 /PRNewswire/ -- The chairman of Huntingdon International Holdings plc (NYSE: HTD), Bennie C. Wooley, today released the following statement in conjunction with the preliminary results for the financial year ended Sept. 30, 1991:
"I am pleased to report that our fourth quarter actual operating performance was consistent with the trading statement we issued on Sept. 20, 1991. The typical business surge which has historically occurred in both our business sectors in our fiscal fourth quarter did not materialize this year and as a result, fourth quarter earnings were below the outstanding achievement of last year. Revenues in both the Life Sciences and the Engineering/Environment Services Groups continued to improve in the fourth quarter, but this improvement was lower than had been anticipated. Although profits were higher in the second half year than they were in the first, they did not exhibit the strong seasonal uplift we have come to expect. However, as compared to competitors in similar businesses, we believe both our operating groups remain leaders, in both profitability and quality. Financing and tax charges were kept to a minimum and are lower than the previous year's charges. This has resulted in total net income of 13,778,000 pounds sterling for the year, being some 3.7 percent below that achieved last year.
"We have not witnessed any significant improvements in the markets served by either group. New order rates in the Life Sciences Group have recently improved slightly, but we are continuing to experience abnormal delays and postponements of actual study starts. The U.S. economy continues to stagnate and in particular construction starts are severely depressed. Inability to arrange financing continues to be the primary reason given by clients for construction project delays and cancellations. We anticipate difficult trading conditions will continue through at least the next two quarters and as a result have significantly reduced our cost base for these periods. Our target is to exhibit improved operating performance as compared to the same periods last year. However, declining economic indicators and early winter snow and ice storms across large areas of the U.S. are not assisting in the achievement of this target.
"On Oct. 4, 1991, we acquired Austin Research Engineers, Inc. (ARE) for US$750,000. ARE had sales of approximately $2.7 million in their year ended Dec. 31, 1990. Although currently small in size ARE is generally recognized as a technological leader in both pavement and bridge management services. Members of their staff are internationally recognized experts and are advisors to government agencies and various transportation authorities. We have combined our unique paving materials laboratory in Houston and our existing pavement management capabilities across the U.S. with ARE and we believe the technological and market knowledge of ARE combined with Huntingdon's business strengths will position us to become future market leaders in pavement and bridge management services.
"As I mentioned in my comments on the third quarter, the issue of US$50 million of 7-1/2 percent convertible capital bonds was completed successfully on Aug. 12, 1991. There is a high probability that the Bonds will be converted prior to redemption and as such will significantly reduce the company's debt to equity ratio. This reduction will expand dramatically our potential for future acquisitions.
"We entered our new fiscal year on Oct. 1, 1991 and as discussed earlier, anticipate trading conditions will remain challenging and pricing highly competitive. However, based on the strengths of the businesses we are in and our sound financial base, we believe your company will continue to be highly successful. We are confident that current businesses will grow and we intend to enhance that growth through selective acquisition.
"It is proposed to pay a final dividend of 1.9 pence per share (9.5 pence per ADR) to shareholders of record as at Jan. 9, 1992. This together with the interim dividend of 0.875 pence per share (4.375 per ADR) will give a total dividend for the year of 2.775 pence per share (13.875 pence per ADR). Accordingly 2,636,000 pounds has been provided out of income for the year."
HUNTINGDON INTERNATIONAL HOLDINGS PLC
Summary of Consolidated Earnings
(Figures in thousands of pounds sterling, except where stated)
Periods ended: Quarter Year
Sept. 30: 1991 1990 1991 1990
Revenues 34,579 32,653 123,051 104,209
Cost of sales 26,137 22,314 92,901 74,161
Gross profit 8,442 10,339 30,150 30,048
SG&A (3,369) (3,159) (12,859) (10,363)
Other income (expense) (287) (74) (383) (656)
Income before taxes 4,786 7,106 16,908 19,029
Taxes 748 1,942 3,130 4,720
Net income 4,038 5,164 13,778 14,309
Dividend 1,808 1,731 2,636 2,442
Earnings per share
- pounds 0.043 0.057 0.146 0.158
Earnings per ADR
- in US$ 0.374 0.500 1.275 1.386
Summary of Consolidated Balance Sheet
(Figures in thousands of pounds sterling, except where stated)
Fixed assets 68,026 58,729
Current assets 54,089 59,336
Creditors (due within 1 year) 22,962 31,346
Net current assets 31,127 27,990
Creditors (due after 1 year) 10,477 30,901
Total assets less liabilities 88,676 55,818
Capital and reserves 60,137 55,818
Convertible Capital Bond 28,539 --
Total 88,676 55,818
1. Earnings per share is based on an average of 94,650,768 (1990: 90,465,450) shares, outstanding during the period.
2. Earnings per ADR is calculated using the Federal Reserve Bank noon buying rate on Sept. 30, 1991 of $1.752 equals 1.00 pounds. Each ADR represents five ordinary shares.
3. These results have been prepared in accordance with UK GAAP and are unaudited.
Copies of this quarterly report will be posted (mailed) to shareholders and are available from the registered office. The payment date for the final dividend for shareholders will be Feb. 7, 1992 and for ADR holders, to whom payment will be made by Morgan Guaranty and Trust Company, Feb. 25, 1992.
/CONTACT: Peter Dawes of Huntingdon International Holdings, in the U.K.: 44-480-433466/
(HTD) CO: Huntingdon International Holdings plc ST: IN: SU: ERN TS -- NY009 -- 4768 11/19/91 08:01 EST