Dallas, Texas, U.S.-based Lennox International Inc. (LII) today announced record sales and net income for third quarter 2005. Revenue increased 20 percent to U.S. $928 million, with foreign exchange contributing one percent to sales growth. Net income was $49 million, up 158 percent from $19 million the prior year. Diluted earnings per share were $0.68, compared with $0.29 in the third quarter last year. Adjusting third quarter 2004 results for a $9 million loss from discontinued operations, income from continuing operations was $28 million, or $0.42 per diluted share.
"LII had an outstanding third quarter," said LII CEO Bob Schjerven. "The improvement was broad-based, with all our business segments realizing increased revenue and segment profit. Robust demand for residential equipment and service due to hot summer weather contributed to our strong results, as did improved domestic demand for commercial equipment. In addition, the price increases we have implemented in our equipment businesses are sticking.
"We are optimistic this momentum will continue into the fourth quarter, and are raising our full-year 2005 earnings per share guidance from $1.60 to $1.70 to a range of $1.75 to $1.80." This range represents a 26-percent to 29-percent improvement over the $1.39 EPS from continuing operations before goodwill impairment reported in 2004. The company also raised its 2005 revenue growth expectations to approximately 10 percent from the high-single digits previously announced.
In the third quarter 2005, LII recorded a cumulative effect of accounting change of $0.2 million income net of tax, reflecting early adoption of SFAS 123R - Share-Based Payments, which addresses the accounting for stock- based compensation.
The company generated $89 million in cash flow from operations and $15 million was invested in capital expenditures, resulting in strong free cash flow of $74 million. As of September 30, 2005, total debt was $236 million, a reduction of $83 million from third quarter 2004. The reduction includes $41 million in convertible notes that were converted to common shares of LII stock prior to the end of the quarter.
LII said its heating and cooling businesses benefited from hot summer temperatures, LII's Residential Heating & Cooling revenue rose 28 percent to $465 million, with foreign exchange contributing one percent of the growth. Segment profit increased 50 percent to $67 million, driven by higher volumes and improved pricing. Segment profit margins expanded 200 basis points to 14.4 percent. "Our activities to comply with the new 13 SEER minimum energy efficiency standard for residential air conditioning are on track," Schjerven said. "We believe the movement to 13 SEER will be a net positive for our company and the industry, and we will be ready with a competitive range of products when the regulation takes effect January 23 of next year."
LII said commercial heating and cooling continues to make progress, with revenue up 16 percent to $192 million, with no meaningful impact from foreign exchange. Strong sales increases to domestic national accounts and through commercial sales districts that focus on contractor customers helped offset lower sales in Europe, where LII says the market remains stagnant. Segment profit grew 34 percent to $27 million, again due to higher volumes and improved pricing. Segment profit margins expanded to 14.0 percent from 12.1 percent last year.
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