Outdoor power equipment maker The Toro Company reported net earnings of $17.3 million on net sales of $383.2 million for its fiscal first quarter ended January 28, 2011. In the comparable fiscal 2010 period, the company delivered net earnings of $10.9 million on net sales of $331.4 million.
"Fiscal 2011 is off to a good start," said Michael J. Hoffman, Toro's chairman and CEO. "We are pleased with the ongoing recovery of our professional businesses. Significant snowfalls drove strong retail demand for snow products, which helped the quarter, and also provided revenue for landscape contractor customers which will support purchases of mowing equipment as we head into spring."
Residential segment net sales for the fiscal 2011 first quarter were $123.3 million, up 5.6% from the same period last year. The company said growing consumer confidence had a positive impact on revenues. The successful introduction of a new line of zero turn mowers helped drive up shipments for riding products, the company said, while strong snowfall and expanded placement drove demand for snow products. This was somewhat offset by difficult weather conditions in Australia that impacted sales of Pope-branded products, along with lower initial orders of walk-behind power mowers in an effort by retailers to time shipments closer to retail demand.
Residential segment earnings for the fiscal 2011 first quarter were $11.4 million, down 15.3% from last year's first quarter.
Professional segment net sales for the fiscal 2011 first quarter totaled $258.3 million, up 21.4% from the same period last year. Shipments were up across all professional businesses. Professional segment earnings for the fiscal 2011 first quarter were $37.9 million, up 46.9% from last year's first quarter.
"Customer confidence in our markets is continuing to build," said Hoffman. "Professional customers are beginning to reinvest in their businesses, and we are well positioned with a record level of new products to drive retail demand and increase our market share. While always mindful of the impact of Mother Nature on our business, we are optimistic about the selling season ahead."
The company now expects fiscal 2011 to show a revenue increase of about 7%.
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