Fitness financials: Life Time Fitness' Q4 profit plummets 32 percent, plus Cybex, Amer Sports, Foot Locker

Life Time Fitness' Q4 profit plummeted 32 percent, Cybex suspended a common stock bonus plan, Amer Sports explored a hybrid bond issue, and Foot Locker declared a quarterly dividend.
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Life Time Fitness' Q4 profit plummets 32 percent

Life Time Fitness (NYSE: LTM) reported a 32-percent drop in fourth-quarter profit, saying it was pulled down by higher operating expenses.

For the quarter ended Dec. 31, net income fell to $13 million, or $0.33 per share, from $19.1 million, or $0.48 per share, in the prior-year period. The company said the latest quarter's results include charges of $0.08 per share stemming from a slowdown in new center development.

Revenue was up 13 percent to $194 million from $171.1 million boosted by an increase in membership dues and in-center revenue.

Total operating expenses increased to $164.6 million from $133.5 million as center operation costs rose and general and administrative expenses trended higher.

For the year, earnings were up 6 percent to $71.8 million, or $1.83 per share, from $68 million, or $1.78 per share, in the previous year. Revenue rose 17 percent to $769.6 million from $655.8 million. Membership increased 13.6 percent to end 2008 at 567,110.

Life Time Fitness reiterated its full-year forecast for earnings and revenue, saying it still expects 2009 net income of $1.50 to $1.70 per share on revenue in a range of $830 million to $860 million.

It said its revenue forecast reflects increased membership at new and existing centers as well as anticipated in-center sales growth.

Life Time said in November that it was cutting 100 jobs at its Chanhassen headquarters as it scaled back expansion plans.

The company said it presently operates 83 fitness centers in 18 states.



Cybex suspends common stock bonus plan

According to a filing with the SEC, the board of directors of Cybex International (Nasdaq: CYBI) confirmed that, based upon 2008 performance, no bonuses are payable under the 2008 management incentive compensation bonus program.

The company noted that non-employee directors of Cybex receive an annual retainer paid in one-half shares of common stock. But, it added in the filing, the shares under the plan have been "exhausted."

As a result, the company's board is suspending the operation of the retainer plan at this time rather than seek an increase in authorized shares under the plan. During the period of suspension, the retainer will be paid in cash, it added.

Amer Sports explores hybrid bond issue, reports shareholder share capital

Amer Sports said it has mandated Nordea Markets to act as a sole bookrunner on a potential hybrid capital issue. The issue is expected to be launched in the near future subject to market conditions. The size of the issue is EUR 50 million to EUR 75 million.



Hybrid bond is a bond that is subordinated to the company's other debt obligations and will be treated as equity in the IFRS financial statements. The dates of interest payment are at the issuer's discretion. Hybrid bond holding does not confer the right to vote at shareholder meetings and will not dilute the holdings of the current shareholders.

In other company news, Amer Sports said Danske Bank A/S Helsinki Branch's share capital and voting rights of Amer Sports will fall under 5 percent on Feb. 23, due to transaction completed on Feb. 18. Danske Bank A/S Helsinki Branch now holds zero shares in the company.



Amer Sports added that Novator Finland Oy has converted all of its Nasdaq OMX forward contracts into direct holdings in shares of Amer Sports on Feb. 18.



After settlement of the forward contracts concerning 7 million shares, Novator Finland Oy will directly hold 14.6 million shares representing 20.11 percent of the shares and voting rights in Amer Sports.



Amer Sports capital consists of 73 million shares in issue.



Foot Locker declares quarterly dividend


The board of directors of Foot Locker (NYSE: FL) declared a quarterly cash dividend on the company's common stock of $0.15 per share, which will be payable on May 1 to shareholders of record on April 17.

--Compiled by Wendy Geister

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