Outdoor financials: Columbia net income rises in Q3, plus VF, Rocky, LaCrosse, Big 5, Sport Chalet

Columbia Sportswear said record sales helped drive its third-quarter net income up 11 percent. The company also lowered its outlook for the full year. Plus, VF’s Q3 revenue, profit boosted by TNF sales; Rocky’s Q3 sales jump 12.3 percent; Q3 sales for LaCrosse drop; Big 5 enters into new credit agreement; and Sport Chalet renegotiates credit line.
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Columbia net income rises in Q3

Columbia Sportswear (Nasdaq: COLM) said record sales helped drive its third-quarter net income up 11 percent. The company also lowered its outlook for the full year.

It earned $52.2 million, or $1.53 per share, for the quarter, versus $46.9 million, or $1.38 per share, in the same quarter the year prior. Excluding a tax benefit, the company earned $1.43 per share.

Revenue rose 16 percent to $504 million. This is the first time the company has hit quarterly sales over $500 million in its 72-year history, which the company attributed to the launch of its new Omni-Heat products.

Compared with the third quarter of 2009, third-quarter 2010 sportswear net sales increased 18 percent to $168.2 million, outerwear net sales increased 12 percent to $223.9 million, footwear net sales increased 18 percent to $82.8 million, and accessories and equipment net sales increased 31 percent to $29.1 million.

For the quarter, Columbia brand net sales increased 16 percent to $430.3 million, net sales of Sorel footwear increased 24 percent to $33.4 million, and Mountain Hardwear brand net sales increased 9 percent to $38.2 million, compared with the third quarter of 2009.

The company said it expects profitability to be pressured in the fourth quarter by costs to expedite the production and delivery of its fall 2010 orders and because of a higher proportion of close-out sales. It now predicts full-year earnings of $2 per share to $2.15 per share.

And, the board of directors approved a fourth quarter dividend of $0.20 per share, payable on Nov. 24 to shareholders of record on Nov. 10.

VF’s Q3 revenue, profit boosted by TNF sales

Double-digit sales growth from North Face and Vans helped push VF Corp. (NYSE: VFC) to record-setting revenues and earnings per share in the third quarter.

Revenue was up 7 percent to $2.23 billion from $2.09 billion. On a constant currency basis, revenues increased 8 percent.

Net income rose 11 percent to $242.8 million, while earnings per share increased 14 percent to $2.22. That compares to $217.9 million, or $1.94 per share, a year earlier. Foreign currency translation rates negatively impacted earnings per share by $0.06 in the quarter.

The company said the momentum continues in its outdoor and action sports businesses allowed it to record revenues, operating income and operating margins in the current quarter. Total global revenues rose 14 percent to $1.04 billion in the third quarter versus $916 million last year, with strong increases in both its Americas and international businesses. Total direct-to-consumer revenues rose 18 percent.

The North Face and Vans businesses had double-digit growth, with global revenues of rising by 17 percent and 19 percent, respectively.

VF said it now expects full-year net income in a range of $6.25 to $6.30 per share. Its prior guidance was for earnings of $6.10 per share. Also, it now anticipates revenue will climb more than 5 percent to about $7.6 billion, up from a previous forecast for revenue growth of 4 percent to 5 percent.

Also, the board of directors declared a quarterly cash dividend of $0.63 per share, an increase of $0.03 per share. It is payable on Dec. 20 to shareholders of record on Dec. 10.

Rocky’s Q3 sales jump 12.3 percent

Rocky Brands (Nasdaq: RCKY), parent of Durango, posted gains in both its sales and profit for the third quarter.

For the quarter ended Sept. 30, net sales increased 12.3 percent to $74.8 million versus net sales of $66.6 million in the third quarter of 2009.

Net income was $4.7 million, or $0.63 per diluted share, versus net income of $2.8 million, or $0.50 per diluted share, a year ago.

Wholesale sales increased 9.0 percent to $59.4 million compared to $54.5 million for the same period in 2009, driven primarily by growth of the work category, it said.

Retail sales were $11.1 million compared to $11.5 million for the same period last year. Military segment sales were $4.3 million versus $0.6 million for the same period in 2009.

Gross margin was $27.2 million, or 36.4 percent of sales, compared to $24.7 million, or 37.1 percent for the same period last year. Selling, general and administrative expenses were $19.2 million, or 25.6 percent of sales, compared to $18.6 million, or 27.9 percent of sales, a year ago.

Q3 sales for LaCrosse drop

LaCrosse Footwear (Nasdaq: BOOT), parent of Danner, reported a drop in third-quarter sales as its work market boot sales plummeted 16 percent.

For the quarter ended Sept. 25, net sales were $37.7 million, compared to $40.8 million in the third quarter of 2009.

Net income was $1.1 million or $0.17 per diluted share, versus $2.2 million or $0.35 per diluted share, in the third quarter of 2009.

Sales to the work market were $18.7 million, down 16 percent from $22.1 million in the same period of 2009.

LaCrosse said work sales were impacted by a quarterly decline in U.S. military orders, which fluctuate from quarter to quarter. Outside of the U.S. government channel, the company added that it had stronger year-over-year demand for its core work boots.

The demand for hunting boots drove outdoor market sales up 2 percent to $19.0 million from $18.7 million in the same period of 2009.

Gross margin was 37.2 percent of net sales, compared to 38.6 percent in the same period of 2009.

Also, the board of directors approved a quarterly dividend of $0.125 per share of common stock, payable on Dec. 18 to shareholders of record on Nov. 22.

Big 5 enters into new credit agreement

Big 5 Sporting Goods (Nasdaq: BGFV) has entered into a new credit agreement, saying it now has access to $140 million with the option to access up to a maximum of $200 million.

The company said it used the initial proceeds to repay in full all of its outstanding debts under its prior financing agreement with The CIT Group/Business Credit and a syndicate of other lenders.

The new credit agreement provides for a revolving credit facility with aggregate availability of up to $140 million, which can increased at the option of Big 5 up to a maximum of $165 million. 

Big 5 can also request additional increases in aggregate availability, which the lenders have the option to provide, up to a maximum of $200 million. The credit facility includes a $50 million sublimit for the issuance of letters of credit and a $20 million sublimit for swingline loans. 

The agreement was arranged by Wells Fargo Capital Finance, with Wells Fargo Bank, as administrative agent and collateral agent, Bank of America, as documentation agent, PNC Bank and Union Bank. 

The initial termination date of the new credit facility is Oct. 18, 2014.

Sport Chalet renegotiates credit line

Sport Chalet (Nasdaq: SPCHA and SPCHB) has signed a new four-year $65 million credit agreement with Bank of America, saying its another step in its long-term business strategy plans.

The company said it was able to borrow on more favorable terms and conditions, increasing its credit facility availability to $65 million from $45 million. It also has revised financial covenants, giving the company greater financial flexibility.

The new facility also reduces the interest rate, which is expected to reduce interest expense by approximately $800,000 on an annualized basis, based on current borrowing forecasts.

The seasonal revolving credit line, from Sept. 1 to Dec. 31, remains unchanged at $70 million. The new agreement extends the expiration date to October 2014.

--Compiled by Wendy Geister

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