Lasco Manufacturing results disappoint

There was bad news and good news for Lasco Manufacturing shareholders embodied in the September quarterly report that was just released on Friday, after trading.
The good news is that the September quarter’s revenues and profit were greater than that of the first quarter to June, but far worse than for the similar period in 2016. The other good news is that “the outlook for the full year remains positive as the evidence shows that we are heading in the right direction and measures are in place to deliver improved results,” the management reported to shareholders.
When revenues rise in most manufacturing operations there is usual increase efficiency as overhead cost tends to rise more slowly than revenues, thus resulting in an increase in gross profit margin, the reverse is also true. This can be seen from Lasco operations with gross profit margin falling form 34 percent in 2016 to 31 percent in2017. In the quarter, revenues fell 11 percent to $1.986 billion while cost of sales fell only 7 percent to $1.36 billion but Gross profit dropped 12 percent to $524 million by $131 million.

Bottle heating machine at Lasco Manufacturing.

Operating expenses grew $46 million or 15 percent to $361 million and profit after tax fell sharply to $103 million from $363 million in 2016, resulting in earnings per share of just 5 cents, down from 9 cents in 2016. For the six months period, revenues fell by 12 percent to $3.5 billion from $3.95 billion in 2016. Gross profit dropped 17 percent to $1.1 billion from $1.32 million.
Operating expenses grew $85 million or 14.5 percent to $670 million and profit after tax fell sharply to $337 million from $587 million in 2016, resulting in earnings per share of 8 cents. “The increase was primarily due to growth in marketing investments to support our brand in an increasingly competitive environment” management stated.
IC Insider.com projects profit for the year to March 2018 at 18 cents and 30 cents for 2018 of course the out turn is going to be dependent on a lot of what new products can deliver in sales.
At the end of September, Lasco has shareholders’ equity of $4.6 billion with borrowings of $1.58 billion with $265 million to be repaid within twelve months and overdraft of $353 million. Trade receivables stood at $1.76 billion with inventories of $719 million while trade payables is at $1 billion.
The stock traded on Friday at $4.60 at a PE of 25 times 2018 earnings and 16 times 2019.

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