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UNIVERSAL MATCHBOX GROUP REPORTS STEADY-ON-COURSE FIRST QUARTER PERFORMANCE

 UNIVERSAL MATCHBOX GROUP REPORTS STEADY-ON-COURSE
 FIRST QUARTER PERFORMANCE
 NEW YORK, April 28 /PRNewswire/ -- Universal Matchbox Group Ltd. (NYSE: UMG) today reported results for the first quarter ended March 31, 1992.
 Net sales for the quarter ended March 31, 1992 were $30.6 million, compared with net sales of $31.3 million for the first quarter last year. The slight decline is due to translating European sales into the company's U.S. dollar reporting currency, reflecting the strengthening of the U.S. dollar against major European currencies in the first quarter of 1992 relative to 1991. Operating loss for the quarter was $1.2 million, unchanged from last year. Net loss applicable to common shares for the current quarter decreased to $1.1 million from $1.3 million in 1991. The first quarter results reflect the seasonality of the industry and are in line with our goal of a profitable year.
 The company's 1992 objective is to achieve profitable growth. Areas of priority include strengthening marketing support and timely delivery of products, as well as maintaining the cost control and asset management programs put in place last year.
 The effect of continual emphasis on asset management is evidenced by the decreased level of accounts receivable and other current assets. Short-term bank borrowings decreased substantially by 12.3 million versus 1991, which coupled with lower interest rates, resulted in savings in interest expense of $0.9 million relative to 1991. There was a foreign exchange gain of $0.7 million in the current quarter, as compared to an exchange gain of $1.3 million in the same period last year.
 Universal Matchbox Group Ltd. is one of the world's leading toy companies. The company designs, manufacturers and markets toys in more than 120 countries. The company is also a contract manufacturer for other major international toy companies.
 UNIVERSAL MATCHBOX GROUP LTD. AND SUBSIDIARIES
 Consolidated Statement of Income (Unaudited)
 (In thousands of U.S. dollars except per-share data)
 Three months ended March 31 1992 1991
 Net sales $30,589 $31,278
 Cost of sales 16,162 16,770
 Gross profit 14,427 14,508
 Advertising & promotion
 expenses 2,378 2,586
 Other selling, general and
 administrative expenses 13,266 13,123
 Operating loss (1,217) (1,201)
 Interest expense 800 1,739
 Gain on foreign exchange (734) (1,286)
 Other expense (income) 102 (82)
 Loss before income taxes (1,385) (1,572)
 Credit for income taxes 284 268
 Net loss (1,101) (1,304)
 Preferred stock dividend
 requirements 46 --
 Net loss applicable to
 common shares $(1,147) $(1,304)
 Earnings per share:
 Net loss applicable to
 common shares $ (.12) $ (.13)
 Weighted average
 common shares
 (in thousands) 9,750 9,750
 UNIVERSAL MATCHBOX GROUP LTD. AND SUBSIDIARIES
 Consolidated Balance Sheet (Unaudited)
 (In thousands of U.S. dollars)
 3/31/92 3/31/91 12/31/91
 Assets
 Accounts receivable $26,910 $29,022 $38,095
 Inventories 31,185 31,145 29,517
 Other current assets 20,311 25,229 20,147
 Non-current assets 30,840 33,811 32,547
 Total $109,246 $119,207 $120,306
 Liabilities and
 Shareholders' Equity
 Short-term bank borrowings $27,021 $39,271 $33,059
 Accounts payable 9,462 6,059 7,460
 Other current liabilities 13,817 14,790 16,240
 Non-current liabilities 11,385 17,023 12,055
 Subordinated convertible
 notes due 1992 2,500 2,500 2,500
 Shareholders' equity 45,061 39,564 48,992
 Total $109,246 $119,207 $120,306
 -0- 4/28/92
 /CONTACT: Philip Y. Sardoff of Green, Lind & McNulty Inc., 908-686-7500, for Universal Matchbox/
 (UMG) CO: Universal Matchbox Group Ltd. ST: New York IN: REA SU: ERN


TQ-SM -- NY024 -- 3680 04/28/92 10:44 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Apr 28, 1992
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