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Helen of Troy Reports Record Q4, Full-Year Results
May 13, 2004
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Personal care appliance maker Helen of Troy Limited reported record sales and earnings for the fourth quarter and fiscal year ended February 29, 2004.

Fourth quarter sales from continuing operations increased 26 percent to U.S. $112.9 million from $89.6 million in the same period of 2003. Net earnings from continuing operations for the quarter were $16.3 million, or $0.50 per diluted share, compared with $8.5 million, or $0.29 per diluted share, for the same period the previous year, an increase of 92 percent in net earnings from continuing operations.

Net loss for the quarter from discontinued operations, including goodwill impairment, was $8.8 million, or -$0.27 per diluted share, compared with a loss of $2 million, or -$0.07, per diluted share for the same period in 2003. Net earnings for the fourth quarter was $7.5 million, or $0.23 per diluted share, versus $6.5 million, or $0.22 per diluted share, from the same period last year, an increase in net earnings of 16 percent.

Full-year net sales from continuing operations increased 25 percent to $474.9 million from $379.8 million in the 2003. Full-year net earnings from continuing operations was $71.6 million, or $2.29 per diluted share, compared with $37.8 million, or $1.28 per diluted share, for the prior year, a net increase from continuing operations of 89 percent.

Full-year net loss from the discontinued operations, including goodwill impairment, was $11 million, or -$0.35 per diluted share, versus net earnings of $924,000, or $0.03 per diluted share a year ago.

Net earnings for the year were $60.5 million, or $1.94 per diluted share, compared with $38.7 million, or $1.31 per diluted share, in the prior year, an increase in net earnings for the year of 56 percent. Current and prior year period continuing operating results have been restated to reflect discontinued operations due to the sale of Tactica International, Inc. effective April 29, 2004.

Gerald J. Rubin, chairman, CEO, and President, said, "We have increased our earnings per diluted share guidance for fiscal year 2005 to $2.50-$2.70 from $2.30-$2.40 on sales of $575 to $600 million. Our expectations for the first quarter of fiscal year 2005 are for sales in the range of $98-$106 million versus the prior year sales of $91 million, an increase of 8 to 16 percent. Diluted earnings per share for the fiscal first quarter are anticipated to be in the range of $0.42 to $0.45 per diluted share, an increase of 2 to 10 percent from prior year continuing operations earnings per diluted share of $.41, which excludes a one time gain for the settlement of litigation in the prior year first quarter."

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