LESCO announces record third quarter

LESCO, a leading provider of products for the professional turf care market, today announced record sales for the quarter ended September 30, 2001. Sales of $144.1 million increased 3.2% compared with $139.6 million in the third quarter of 2000. Net income of $0.3 million, or $0.04 per diluted share, compared with $4.2 million, or $0.49 per diluted share, in the third quarter of 2000. These results are in line with guidance issued by the Company on November 1, 2001.

The Company's quarterly results were adversely impacted by three primary factors: the rising cost of raw materials, principally urea; an intensely competitive price environment which impacted margins; and the attacks of September 11, which caused purchasing cutbacks by golf customers concerned about reduced travel to resorts and by lawn care customers who deferred decisions on new equipment in the wake of the tragedy.

"Given all of the market conditions we faced in the third quarter, I am pleased with our sales performance despite the effects of intense price competition and a significant drop in sales after September 11. Because of price competition and a large increase in raw material costs, margins declined significantly and this resulted in decreased earnings from a year ago," said William A. Foley, Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer of LESCO.

"Sales for the golf division in the quarter were flat, but down 17% in September. Golf, in general, has been under pressure. Golf rounds were down 15% for the first nine months of the year due to the weaker economy, and the September tragedy accelerated this trend. Lawn care sales for the quarter were up 4% over year-ago levels but down 2% for the month of September. Equipment sales were off 7% for the quarter and 21% for September," said Foley.

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