International, health club sales spell growth for Life Fitness

Life Fitness sales climbed 6 percent in the first quarter.
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Life Fitness has been building some serious technology into its equipment lately — maybe that’s why its parent company, Brunswick Corporation, reported a jump in sales for the first quarter.

Health club and international sales, which fueled gains in Brunswick Corp.’s (NYSE:BC) fitness segment in the fourth quarter of 2012, gave a repeat performance in the first quarter 2013. Sales rose 6 percent to $166.2 million from $157.1 million a year ago.

Operating earnings grew by 3 percent in the first quarter of 2013 year-over-year, as a result of higher sales combined with a favorable insurance settlement, partially offset by investments in growth initiatives.

The fitness segment includes the Life Fitness Division, which designs, manufactures and sells Life Fitness and Hammer Strength equipment. International sales, which increased 11 percent year-over-year, represented 50 percent of total segment sales in the quarter.

“Positive health and wellness trends, combined with exciting new products, have positioned our fitness business to deliver excellent results again in 2013,” Brunswick Chairman and CEO Dustan E. McCoy said in a news release.

Overall Brunswick reported net earnings of $49.8 million, or 53 cents per diluted share, compared with a year-earlier profit of $39.7 million, or 43 cents per share. First-quarter sales grew 3.7 percent to $995.3 million from $959.6 million in the year-ago quarter.

Brunswick’s other segments include boats, marine engines, bowling and billiards.

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