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Husky turns slight profit in first quarter

Published on 2002-12-06. Author : SpecialChem

BOLTON, ON, Dec. 6 -- Husky Injection Molding Systems released an improved sales and earnings report for the first quarter although it warned that overall market conditions remain soft.

Sales for the quarter increased 39% to $149.2 million compared to $107.4 million last year. Net income improved substantially, from a loss of $17.8 million last year to a profit of $1.1 million. "This gives us great momentum as it represents the first time in four years that we have been profitable at the start of the fiscal year," said Robert Schad, Husky's president and chief executive officer.

Husky said orders in the quarter were up 16%. Over the last 12 months to the end of October, orders have grown 24%, the company said.

In North America, sales increased 11% due to strong demand in packaging, as well as technical and general application markets. PET sales were also higher in the quarter due to the pick up in demand that began in the second half of fiscal 2002. European sales increased 48% due to higher shipments in Eastern Europe and export regions.

Eastern European sales increased due to demand in a range of PET applications. Export sales increased due to demand in both PET and closure applications. In Latin America, sales increased 13%, led by higher shipments in Mexico and Brazil. And, in Asia Pacific, sales more than doubled because of strong demand in PET applications.

Still, the company says uncertain market conditions will persist into 2003. Husky has delayed providing guidance for the year. However, in the near term, it expects that second-quarter results will be marginally profitable compared to a net loss of $6.5 million for the same period last year.

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