Outdoor financials: Q2 sales drop in all Johnson Outdoors' business segments, plus Crocs, Luxottica, LaCrosse, Liberty Media/Backcountry.com, Outdoor Channel

Q2 sales dropped in all of Johnson Outdoors' business segments, Crocs' Q1 loss widened, Luxottica posted a 22.5 percent earnings fall, LaCrosse said it would acquire END Footwear, the parent company for Backcountry.com said its Q1 was hurt by the economy, and the Outdoor Channel postponed an SEC filing.
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Q2 sales drop in all Johnson Outdoors' business segments

Johnson Outdoors (Nasdaq: JOUT) said it posted higher earnings on lower net sales for its second quarter. All segments, including watercraft and outdoor equipment, posted sales drops.

For the quarter ended April 3, net income from continuing operations of $2.5 million, or $0.27 per diluted share, compared to net income of $0.5 million, or $0.05 per diluted share, in the same quarter last year. The company said income during the prior year quarter was negatively impacted by a $1.6 million pre-tax foreign exchange loss related to the accounting treatment of U.S. dollar holdings in Switzerland.

Total net sales for the quarter were $106.6 million compared to $121.8 million in the prior year period -- a drop of 12.5 percent caused largely by economic conditions in key markets. Unfavorable currency translation had a 3.7-percent impact on total company revenues in the quarter.

Total company operating profit of $5.8 million for the second fiscal quarter compared favorably to operating profit of $3.6 million in the prior year quarter.

Watercraft sales were $21.6 million -- 8.7 percent below the prior year of $23.7 million -- as a result of an unfavorable currency translation of 4.3 percent, the scaling back of distribution to non-core channels and weak international markets, Johnson Outdoors said.

Outdoor equipment sales were $8.4 million versus $13.2 million last year. The company said outdoor equipment sales compared unfavorably to last year due primarily to pacing of military tent orders and slower-than-normal commercial tent sales.

Johnson said revenues for its marine electronics segment were 4.6 percent below last year hit by continued weakness in domestic and international boat markets -- $58.7 million versus $61.5 million.

Johnson Outdoors is parent of Old Town, Ocean Kayak, Necky, Extrasport and Eureka!, among others.

Crocs Q1 loss widens

Crocs (Nasdaq: CROX) reported a wider first-quarter loss and issued a weak outlook for the second quarter.

The company reported a loss of $22.4 million, or $0.27 per share, compared with a loss of $4.5 million, or $0.05 per share, for the prior-year quarter. Excluding a loss related to currency exchange rates, the company said it would have posted a loss of $0.23 per share for the latest period.

Total revenue fell 32 percent to $134.9 million from $198.5 million.

Crocs said its retail and Internet sales increased, but its wholesale sales decreased 45 percent for the quarter as retailers limited orders on slower consumer spending.

For the second quarter, the company said it expects a loss of $0.15 to $0.31 per share for the second quarter on revenue between $135 million and $160 million. Crocs did not provide annual guidance at this time given the uncertain global economic situation.

Shares fell $0.96, or nearly 30 percent, to close at $2.52 on May 8. The stock has traded between $0.79 and $12.50 during the past 52 weeks.

Luxottica posts 22.5 percent earnings fall

Luxottica (NYSE: LUX), parent of Oakley, said its first-quarter earnings were hurt by reduced inventories and declining demand.

During the quarter, the company earned EUR 80.4 million (USD $106.9 million) compared with EUR 103.7 million (USD $137.9 million) last year -- a 22.5 percent drop. Earnings per share were EUR 0.18 (USD $0.23), down 22.6 percent from last year's EUR 0.23 (USD $0.30).

It posted sales of EUR 1.31 billion (USD $1.74 billion), compared to EUR 1.39 billion (USD $1.84 billion) in 2008. It was down by 6.2 percent at current exchange rates and by 11.6 percent at constant exchange rates.

Consolidated EBITDA was down year-over-year by 16.6 percent to EUR 229.6 million (USD $305.4 million) from EUR 275.3 million (USD $366.2 million).

Luxottica said positive sales performance in all markets by Oakley and the success of Ray-Ban's optical collections enabled the group to partially offset the effects of the challenging macro-economic environment.

CEO Andrea Guerra also noted in a statement, "After the first four months of 2009, we are already seeing a clear difference between the January to February and March to April periods. In fact, in March and April our results have stabilized in North America, while improving in nearly all other markets. April ended with sales results ahead of last year."



(Conversion of Euros into U.S. dollars is for information only, is not necessarily relative to earnings, and is based on the currency rate as of May 7.)

LaCrosse to acquire END Footwear

LaCrosse Footwear (Nasdaq: BOOT) said it is acquiring certain assets of Environmentally Neutral Design Outdoor, also known as END Footwear, for $500,000. The transaction is expected to close by the end of May. LaCrosse did not disclose how it would affect future earnings.

Once the acquisition is completed, the new subsidiary will continue to sell footwear under the END brand name from its Portland, Ore., location. LaCrosse said Andrew Estey, current CEO of END, and key employees will stay on.

LaCrosse said it intends to invest in increased marketing efforts and to leverage its capabilities in IT, sourcing, quality, logistics and its international reach to help grow the END brand. It added that the acquisition of END's assets is expected to allow LaCrosse the opportunity to compete in new channels and product categories.

For the complete SNEWS report on the acquisition, click here.



Backcountry.com parent Q1 hurt by economy


Liberty Media Corp. (Nasdaq: LINTA, LCAPA, LMDIA), parent of Backcountry.com, posted a decline in first-quarter operating income and revenue as sales dropped in the United States and Britain due to a difficult retail environment.

The company reported a consolidated operating income of $275 million compared with a year-earlier operating income of $283 million, across its three main units: Liberty Interactive, Liberty Entertainment and Liberty Capital.

Consolidated revenue fell by 5.5 percent to $1.991 billion.

Liberty Interactive, the unit with Backcountry.com and several e-commerce companies, posted a decline of 15 percent in adjusted operating income before depreciation and amortization to $341 million during the quarter.

Outdoor Channel postpones SEC filing

Outdoor Channel Holdings (Nasdaq: OUTD) said it has postponed its 2009 first-quarter earnings release and filed paperwork with the SEC notifying it of the delay. The company added that it intends to file its Form 10-Q within the five-day extension period.

The delays are from the company's acquisition of the assets of Winnercomm and the additional time required to complete the financial statements from the acquisition.

--Compiled by Wendy Geister

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