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TORO RETURNS TO PROFITABILITY IN FISCAL 1993; ALL BUSINESSES RECORD A SIGNIFICANT IMPROVEMENT IN SALES AND OPERATING EARNINGS

 BLOOMINGTON, Minn., Sept. 13 /PRNewswire/ -- The Toro Company (NYSE: TTC) today reported that it returned to profitability for the fiscal year ended July 31, 1993. Toro Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Kendrick B. Melrose said, "We are extremely proud of the tremendous strides we made in fiscal 1993. We delivered a solid turnaround and executed strategies to keep us on the path to renewed growth and full financial recovery.
 "We had an excellent year in all respects," Melrose continued. "Financially, we also strengthened our balance sheet considerably. We reduced our long-term debt at year-end and substantially lowered our short-term debt usage during the year.
 "Operationally, every business recorded a significant increase in sales and operating earnings, while at the same time managing inventories to appropriate levels. Moreover, every product introduced during the year was well received as reflected in our sales and, very importantly, the restructuring initiatives taken last year provided the expected financial and operational benefits.
 "Also of significance, we continued to aggressively pursue our strategies to maintain worldwide leadership in our market segments," Melrose said.
 Net earnings were $13.0 million or $1.05 per share for the fiscal year 1993. For fiscal year 1992, the company reported a net loss of $23.8 million or $1.98 per share, which included restructuring charges of $1.41 per share. Sales for fiscal 1993 were $684.3 million compared to $643.8 million last year, a 6.3 percent increase, reflecting higher sales across all of the company's product lines. The sales gains were attributable to new product introductions in each business, expanded distribution channels for both irrigation and consumer products, more competitive pricing for our lawn and garden products, and a strong golf market, the company reported.
 For the fourth quarter of fiscal 1993, Toro reported net earnings of $2.6 million or 21 cents per share versus a net loss of $15.0 million or $1.25 per share for the year-ago period. Results for the fourth quarter of fiscal 1992 reflected charges of 56 cents per share related to three facility closings, and net loss from operations of 69 cents per share.
 Sales for the fourth quarter of 1993 rose 27.7 percent to $176.4 million from $138.1 million in the year-earlier quarter. "While we are very pleased with the sales gain, we recognize that the year-ago fourth quarter was very depressed," said Melrose.
 Consumer products showed a 3.2 percent sales increase in 1993 compared to 1992. Sales were driven by the strength of the Lawn-Boy strategy, including expanded distribution channels.
 Worldwide sales of irrigation products rose 12.1 percent for fiscal 1993 versus the previous year. Domestically, sales grew 21.6 percent. The domestic gain was offset partially by economic weakness in parts of Europe and Australia, and unfavorable weather conditions in Canada.
 Commercial equipment continued to show good momentum worldwide, posting a 9.1 percent sales increase for fiscal 1993, reflecting continued strength from the golf market and increasing demand from other commercial markets.
 "Our strategies for profitable growth are working, as reflected in the results for fiscal 1993. We expect the momentum to continue to build in 1994 and beyond. We anticipate that our 1994 results will reflect a return to a more normal seasonal pattern with a stronger first quarter than in fiscal 1993," Melrose said.
 The Toro Company is the leading provider of lawn and turf care products for residential, golf and commercial markets.
 To receive The Toro Company's latest news release and other corporate documents, free of charge via fax, simply dial 1-800-PRO-INFO. Use company code 154.
 THE TORO COMPANY AND SUBSIDIARIES
 Condensed Consolidated Statements of Operations
 (Dollars in thousands, except per-share data)
 (Unaudited) (Audited)
 Three Months Ended 12 Months Ended
 July 31 1993 1992 1993 1992
 Net sales $176,362 $138,134 $684,324 $643,748
 Cost of sales 113,925 86,294 445,495 419,138
 Gross profit 62,437 51,840 238,829 224,610
 SG&A expenses 53,272 60,669 203,377 223,166
 Restructuring
 expense -- 9,900 -- 24,900
 Earnings (loss)
 from operations 9,165 (18,729) 35,452 (23,456)
 Interest expense 4,170 4,702 17,150 18,726
 Other (income)
 expense, net 451 (1,359) (3,053) (7,279)
 Earnings (loss)
 bef. income taxes 4,544 (22,072) 21,355 (34,903)
 Provision (benefit)
 for income taxes 1,927 (7,044) 8,315 (11,150)
 Net earnings (loss)$2,167 $(15,028) $13,040 $(23,753)
 Percent of net sales 1.5 (10.9) 1.9 (3.7)
 Net earnings (loss)
 per common and common
 share equivalent $0.21 $(1.25) $1.05 $(1.98)
 Common and common
 share equivalent 12,444 12,036 12,379 11,982
 Sales By Product Line
 (Unaudited, dollars in thousands)
 Three Months Ended 12 Months Ended
 July 31 1993 1992 1993 1992
 Consumer products $ 90,973 $ 61,465 $367,958 $356,484
 Commercial products 51,971 47,113 204,575 187,503
 Irrigation products 33,418 29,556 111,791 99,761
 Total (A) $176,362 $138,134 $684,324 $643,748
 (A) Includes
 international
 sales of $ 30,156 $ 31,463 $129,422 $132,185
 THE TORO COMPANY AND SUBSIDIARIES
 Condensed Consolidated Balance Sheets (Audited)
 (Dollars in thousands)
 ASSETS July 31, 1993 July 31, 1992
 Cash $ 61,793 $ 25,491
 Receivables (net) 180,363 206,670
 Inventories 78,708 74,125
 Prepaid expenses 23,266 26,231
 Total current assets 344,130 332,517
 Property, plant and
 equipment, net 59,969 70,388
 Other assets 15,104 18,405
 Total assets $419,203 $421,310
 LIABILITIES AND STOCKHOLDERS' EQUITY
 Current portion of
 long-term debt $ 15,000 --
 Short-term debt -- --
 Accounts payable 28,786 27,596
 Other accrued liabilities 106,474 94,491
 Total current liabilities 150,260 122,087
 Deferred income taxes 1,372 2,509
 Long-term debt, less
 current portion 122,970 164,100
 Stockholders' equity 144,601 132,614
 Total liabilities and
 stockholders' equity $419,203 $421,310
 -0- 9/13/93
 /CONTACT: Dennis Himan vice president and treasurer, 612-887-8411, or Stephen D. Keating, assistant treasurer 612-887-8526, both of The Toro Company, or Fred Nachman, 312-266-7800, or Gretchen Chambers, 212-661-8030, both of the Financial Relations Board/
 (TTC)


CO: The Toro Company ST: Minnesota IN: SU: ERN

TS -- NY039 -- 1252 09/13/93 11:29 EDT
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Date:Sep 13, 1993
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