Briggs & Stratton 4Q performance tops Street view

Briggs & Stratton 4th-quarter adjusted profit, revenue beat analysts' expectations

Associated Press

MILWAUKEE (AP) -- Briggs & Stratton's fourth-quarter loss widened, weighed down mostly by a large impairment charge.

Adjusted profit and revenues topped analyst expectations, however, and shares rose in premarket trading Thursday.

The maker of engines for outdoor power equipment lost $55 million, or $1.17 per share, for the three months ended June 30. That compares with a loss of $8.4 million, or 18 cents per share, in the prior-year period.

Excluding a goodwill and trade name impairment charge of $1.30 per share, restructuring costs and other items, earnings were 22 cents per share.

Analysts surveyed by FactSet expected earnings of 19 cents per share.

Briggs & Stratton's stock gained 41 cents, or 2 percent, to $20.51 before the market open.

Revenue dropped 5 percent to $477.2 million from $501.2 million because of cooler weather in the U.S. and Europe and its decision to stop selling lawn and garden products to large U.S. retailers.

This still beat Wall Street's forecast for $475 million in revenue.

Chairman, President and CEO Todd Teske said in a statement that the fiscal year saw consumers still cautious on spending on outdoor power equipment and there were lingering effects from the droughts in the U.S. and Australia during last summer. Teske said that sales have started to pick up over the past several weeks.

Within the engines unit, sales fell 7 percent to $299 million partly due to lower shipments of engines used for walk and riding lawnmowers, pressure washers and snow throwers in North America and Europe.

Sales for the products division declined 8 percent to $203.1 million mostly because of the decision to stop selling lawn and garden equipment at large U.S. retailers. A drop in pressure washer sales in North America also hurt the performance.

For the year, Briggs & Stratton Corp. lost $33.7 million, or 73 cents per share. A year ago the company earned $29 million, or 57 cents per share.

Adjusted earnings were 93 cents per share.

Annual revenue declined 10 percent to $1.86 billion from $2.07 billion.

Looking ahead, Briggs & Stratton expects fiscal 2014 earnings of $1.04 to $1.28 per share. Revenue is forecast between $1.88 billion and $2.03 billion.

Analysts predict full-year earnings of $1.23 per share on revenue of $1.95 billion.


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