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Edited Transcript of KAI earnings conference call or presentation 2-May-17 8:30pm GMT

Thomson Reuters StreetEvents

Q1 2017 Kadant Inc Earnings Call

WESTFORD May 4, 2017 (Thomson StreetEvents) -- Edited Transcript of Kadant Inc earnings conference call or presentation Tuesday, May 2, 2017 at 8:30:00pm GMT

TEXT version of Transcript

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Corporate Participants

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* Jonathan W. Painter

Kadant Inc. - CEO, President and Director

* Michael J. McKenney

Kadant Inc. - CFO and SVP

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Conference Call Participants

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* Daniel Andres Jacome

Sidoti & Company, LLC - Research Analyst

* Rudolf A. Hokanson

Barrington Research Associates, Inc., Research Division - MD

* Walter Scott Liptak

Seaport Global Securities LLC, Research Division - MD of Diversified Industrials and Senior Industrials Analyst

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Presentation

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Operator [1]

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Good day, ladies and gentlemen, and welcome to the Kadant Inc. Q1 2017 Earnings Conference Call. (Operator Instructions) As a reminder, this conference call may be recorded.

I would now like to introduce your host for today's conference, Michael McKenney, Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer. Please go ahead.

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Michael J. McKenney, Kadant Inc. - CFO and SVP [2]

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Thank you, Charlotte. Good afternoon, everyone, and welcome to Kadant's First Quarter 2017 Earnings Call. With me on the call today, is Jon Painter, our President and Chief Executive Officer.

Before we begin, let me read our safe harbor statement. Various remarks that we may make today about Kadant's future expectations, plans and prospects are forward-looking statements for purposes of the safe harbor provisions under the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995.

Our actual results may differ materially from these forward-looking statements as a result of various important factors, including those outlined at the beginning of our slide presentation and those discussed under the heading Risk Factors in our annual report on Form 10-K for the fiscal year ended December 31, 2016. Our Form 10-K is on file with the SEC and is also available in the Investors section of our website at www.kadant.com, under the heading SEC filings.

In addition, any forward-looking statements we make during this webcast represent our views only as of today. While we may elect to update forward-looking statements at some point in the future, we specifically disclaim any obligation to do so, even if our estimates change, and you should not rely on these forward-looking statements as representing our views on any date after today.

During this webcast, we'll refer to some non-GAAP financial measures. These non-GAAP measures are not prepared in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles. A reconciliation of the non-GAAP financial measures to the most directly comparable GAAP measures is contained in our first quarter earnings press release issued today, which is available in the Investors section of our website at www.kadant.com, under the heading Investor News.

With that, I'll turn the call over to Jon Painter, who will give you an update on Kadant's business and future prospects. Following Jon's remarks, I will give an overview of our financial results for the quarter, and we will then have a Q&A session. Jon?

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Jonathan W. Painter, Kadant Inc. - CEO, President and Director [3]

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Thanks, Mike. Hello, everyone. It's my pleasure to brief you on our first quarter results and our outlook for the rest of 2017.

Overall, we had a great start to the year with strong operating performance leading to a big earnings per share [beat] as well as record bookings and record parts and consumables revenue and booking.

Slide 5 contains the specifics of our first quarter financial results. Without question, one of the highlights of the first quarter was our record bookings of $119 million, up 23% versus Q1 of last year and following a strong bookings performance in Q4 of $114 million. This was driven in large part by continued strong capital bookings in China as well as record parts and consumables booking. Other key points I want to note include, first quarter revenue of $103 million exceeded the top end of our guidance of $100 million. Gross margin of 47.6% was the third best in our history due largely to a high percentage of parts and consumables at 68% of revenues and solid pricing execution.

Adjusted EBITDA was up 11% to $15 million, representing 15% of revenue. We generated $0.80 of GAAP diluted earnings per share, handily beating the top end of our guidance of $0.66 and we're up 11% compared to last year's adjusted earnings per share.

For the first time in quite a while, FX had a relatively minor impact on our results. Our revenue growth in Q1, however, was due to the contribution from PAAL which we acquired in the second quarter of 2016. As you can see on Slide 6, our internal revenue growth in the first quarter without the impact of PAAL, was a negative 6% while internal growth in adjusted earnings per share was up 4%. Internal growth in bookings was a solid 11%. I'm also pleased to report our internal revenue growth for parts and consumables in Q1 was up 5% while bookings were up 14%.

On Slide 7, you can see a nice trend in bookings over the last 3 quarters, culminating in a record $119 million in bookings in the first quarter of 2017. More encouraging, we continue to see an active pipeline of projects.

The major contributors to our bookings performance were our Stock-Prep product line, which saw strong increases in China, as was the case last quarter; and our Wood Processing and Fluid Handling product lines, which were up 26% and 16%, respectively versus last year.

Q1 revenue increased 7% to $103 million, due largely to the contribution of PAAL. All of our product lines saw revenue growth in the first quarter compared to the same period last year. Another bright spot of the quarter was the performance of our parts and consumables business. Revenue from parts and consumables in the first quarter increased 11% to a record $70 million and represented 68% of our total Q1 revenue.

This solid revenue increase included internal growth in our Wood Processing and Fluid Handling product lines.

We pay a lot of attention to our parts and consumables business, so it's satisfying to see this strong performance.

Parts and consumables bookings were also outstanding, up 20% to a record $75 million. All major regions experienced increased parts and consumables bookings compared to Q1 of last year.

Next, I'd like to review our performance in the major geographic regions where we operate. Let me start with North America. The pulp and paper market in North America is solid and stable, while the U.S. housing market continued its recovery leading to strong growth in our Wood Processing product line.

As you can see on Slide 9, revenue increased for the second consecutive quarter to $50 million, but was 8% compared to the first quarter of 2016. Bookings in North America were $57 million, up 16% sequentially and 5% compared to Q1 of last year. Increases in bookings for our Wood Processing and our Fiber-based Product lines offset reductions in our Stock-Prep product line compared to a very strong Q1 of last year. We had a decent level of larger orders in North America in the first quarter, including 10 rebuild orders for our Wood Processing products valued at nearly $4 million and orders for our recycling system and chemical pulping products with a combined value of approximately $7.5 million.

On Slide 10, we show our revenue and bookings performance in Europe. First quarter revenue was up 56% year-over-year, thanks largely to PAAL and was up 11% sequentially. Bookings in Europe were down 2% sequentially from the near-record performance in Q4 of 2016 and remained strong at $32 million. Overall, the market in Europe is pretty good and Russia continues to be a bright spot for capital projects. We booked nearly $4 million in Russia in Q1 and there are still projects in the pipeline which we hope to secure this year.

Turning now to Asia. Revenue was down 9% from last year, due largely to the slower bookings levels we had in the middle of 2016. The overall softness in China capital project activity in mid-2016 constrained revenues in the second half of 2016 and the first quarter of 2017. That said, the strong bookings performance from China, in the last 2 quarters, will have a positive impact on revenues going forward in 2017. The high level of capital bookings we had in Q4 of last year continued in the first quarter of 2017, contributing to a 19% increase in overall booking versus the same period in 2016. All of our product lines had double-digit growth in booking. In China, we booked 3 large OCC system orders during Q1, with a combined value of approximately $11 million and numerous orders for our drying systems and fabric cleaning equipment with a combined value of approximately $2 million.

Moreover, after the first quarter closed, we booked an order with a value of more than $6 million from a containerboard producer for 2 OCC recycling systems.

We continue to have an active pipeline of projects in the works, which looks promising for later this year. Although, we know the capital equipment market in China can be volatile.

Finally, a few comments on our rest of the world results. Our revenue in the rest of the world was $8 million in Q1, up 4% compared to the same period last year and up 35% on a sequential basis.

Bookings were also up sequentially in year-over-year due to a number of smaller projects, including equipment for pulp drying at a major pulp and paper producer in Brazil. That said, there's still a lot of political uncertainty in Brazil, which continues to have an adverse impact on the economy.

I'd like to conclude my remarks with a few comments on our guidance for Q2 and the full year 2017.

We're encouraged by the booking strengths we've seen in the past 2 quarters and the strong start to 2017. Based on our Q1 results and our outlook for the remainder of 2017, we are raising our full year revenue and earnings per share guidance. For 2017, we now expect to achieve, GAAP diluted earnings per share of $3.27 to $3.37 on revenues of $427 million to $437 million. For the second quarter of 2017, we expect to achieve GAAP diluted earnings per share of $0.87 to $0.91 on revenues of $107 million to $110 million.

I'll now pass the call over to Mike for additional details on our financial performance in Q1. Mike?

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Michael J. McKenney, Kadant Inc. - CFO and SVP [4]

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Thank you, Jon. I'll start with our gross margin performance. Consolidated gross margins were 47.6% in the first quarter of 2017, up 200 basis points compared to 45.6% in the first quarter of 2016. The increase in gross margins from last year's first quarter was principally due to higher margins in our parts and consumables business as well as a favorable product mix. Our higher-margin parts and consumables revenue represented 68% of total revenue in the first quarter of 2017 compared to 65% in the first quarter of 2016.

Now let's turn to Slide 16 and our quarterly SG&A expenses. SG&A expenses were $34.8 million in the first quarter of 2017, up $2.3 million from the first quarter of 2016. This included an increase of $3.1 million, resulting from our acquisition of PAAL and a favorable foreign currency translation effect of $0.4 million. SG&A expenses, in the first quarter of 2016 included $1.4 million of acquisition costs associated with the PAAL acquisition. Excluding PAAL's SG&A and the foreign currency translation effect in the first quarter of 2017, and excluding the acquisition costs in the first quarter of 2016, SG&A was up $1 million. SG&A expense as a percentage of revenue was 33.8% in the first quarter of 2017 compared to 33.7% in the first quarter of 2016.

Let me turn next to our EPS results for the quarter. In the first quarter of 2017, GAAP diluted earnings per share were $0.80 and there were no adjustments to EPS. In the first quarter of 2016, GAAP diluted EPS was $0.62 and our adjusted diluted EPS was $0.72. The $0.10 difference relates to acquisition costs net of a gain on the sale of a facility. The increase of $0.08 in GAAP diluted EPS in the first quarter of '17 compared to adjusted diluted EPS in the first quarter of '16 consists of the following: $0.23 due to higher gross margin percentages; $0.07 due to inclusion of the operating results from PAAL; and $0.03 due to a lower effective tax rate. These increases were partially offset by $0.21 due to lower revenue and $0.04 due to higher operating cost. Collectively, included in all the categories I just mentioned, was an unfavorable foreign currency translation effect of $0.02 in the first quarter of 2017 compared to last year's quarter due to the strengthening of the U.S. dollar.

Let me also take a moment to compare our diluted EPS results in the first quarter to the guidance we issued during our February 2017 earnings call. Our GAAP diluted EPS guidance for the first quarter of '17 was $0.62 to $0.66. We reported GAAP diluted earnings per share of $0.80 in the first quarter of '17. This $0.14 increase over the high end of our guidance range was principally the result of better-than-expected operating results from our Stock-Preparation product line in all regions.

I would also like to point out that in our February call I noted that our tax rate for the first quarter of '17 would likely be lower than the remaining quarters of '17 due to an anticipated tax benefit associated with the vesting of equity awards in March. The tax rate for the first quarter of '17 was 23%, and as anticipated in our guidance, first quarter 2017 GAAP diluted EPS included tax benefit of $0.04 related to the vesting of equity awards. As we guided in February, we still expect our effective tax rate will be approximately 27% to 28% in 2017.

Now let's turn to our cash flows and working capital metrics, starting on Slide 18.

Cash flow from operations were $1.7 million in the first quarter of 2017, down from $5.5 million in the first quarter of 2016. As you can see on the chart, the major factor contributing to this performance in the first quarter of 2017 was a $12.2 million use related to working capital, primarily due to a $6.2 million increase in accounts receivable and unbilled costs and fees and a $4 million increase in inventory. The inventory increase is related to projects that are scheduled for delivery later this year, and we expect the cash flows will be positively affected in future quarters as we complete and ship these projects.

The receivables increase was principally driven by shipments in the last month of the first quarter, which are still in accounts receivable. As we have noted in the past, historically, the first quarter has been a weak quarter for operating cash flows, partly due to the payment of performance incentive compensation.

We had several notable nonoperating uses of cash in the first quarter of 2017. We paid $2.2 million for tax withholding payments related to the vesting of stock awards, paid a dividend of $2.1 million and also paid $0.7 million in debt issuance cost related to our new credit facility. We also expended $1.7 million for capital expenditures.

I'd like to update our guidance on CapEx spending for 2017. In addition to our normal CapEx of $7 million to $8 million, we have a facility project under way. We anticipate funding for this project to be approximately $12 million in 2017 and $4 million in 2018.

Let's now look at our key working capital metrics on Slide 19. Overall, our days in inventory and payables have remained fairly consistent from the first quarter of 2016 through the first quarter of 2017. Days in receivables increased to 67 days from 62 days at the end of the fourth quarter of 2016, as a result of the timing of shipments, as I noted when discussing cash flows.

Looking at our overall working capital position, our cash conversion days measure, calculated by taking days in receivables plus days in inventory and subtracting days in accounts payable, was 120 at the end of the first quarter of 2017, up 2 days from the first quarter of 2016. Working capital as a percentage of revenue was 14.1% in the first quarter of '17, compared to 11% in the fourth quarter of '16 and 15.1% in the first quarter of '16.

Net cash, that is, cash less debt at the end of the first quarter of 2017, was $2.5 million, down from net cash of $7.2 million in the fourth quarter of 2016.

As you can see on Slide 22, our leverage ratio calculated as defined in our updated credit facility, was 0.53 at the end of the first quarter 2017. Under the credit facility, this ratio must be less than 3.5.

As a final note, in March, we completed the process of renewing our credit facility. The new credit facility is a 5-year unsecured multicurrency revolving credit facility primarily with our existing bank group, includes a committed aggregate principal amount of $200 million, an increase from $100 million in the old facility. In addition, there is an uncommitted, unsecured facility of an additional $100 million, up from $50 million in the old facility.

That concludes my review of the financials, and I will now turn the call back over to the operator for a Q&A section. Operator?

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Questions and Answers

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Operator [1]

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(Operator Instructions) Our first question comes from the line of Rudy Hokanson from Barrington Research.

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Rudolf A. Hokanson, Barrington Research Associates, Inc., Research Division - MD [2]

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Nice quarter. A question. It sounds like so much right now is focused on China, and you went into some detail on that, but could you tell us a little bit more about what's going on with Carmanah and your outlook on the housing market? And what we can expect out of that in 2017?

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Jonathan W. Painter, Kadant Inc. - CEO, President and Director [3]

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Sure. So as you know, the housing market has had a steady -- slow and steady increase from the recession in, kind of, the '07, '08 period. So -- and it's probably been a little slower than we expected, but I think that means it'll last a little longer than we expected. And the price of OCC is nice and high. They're making good money. So a lot of the -- Carmanah had a fantastic -- our Wood Processing businesses had a fantastic quarter, and North America was definitely driving that. So the mills in the Southeast are making very, very good money at this point. And it looks fairly promising going forward, I would say. Certainly, the mills think that because they're ordering a lot.

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Rudolf A. Hokanson, Barrington Research Associates, Inc., Research Division - MD [4]

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Okay. So you would expect that business to outperform last year on a relative basis? (inaudible)

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Jonathan W. Painter, Kadant Inc. - CEO, President and Director [5]

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They're certainly off to a hell of a start. And they had -- it's fair to say, I would say, they had an extremely strong parts bookings. I talked about sort of those 10 rebuilds. That's a little unusual. I don't think that's going to be happening every quarter going forward. But they are definitely, out of the block, very, very strong.

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Rudolf A. Hokanson, Barrington Research Associates, Inc., Research Division - MD [6]

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Okay. And could you just focus a little bit more on the strength in Europe. Is that a particular region? Is it a country or -- because it seems fairly broad?

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Jonathan W. Painter, Kadant Inc. - CEO, President and Director [7]

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So I would say, as I kind of mentioned in my remarks, Russia definitely stands out. As you know, the ruble has weakened, it's down like 40% or so from just a few years ago. And the mills that are making a lot of money in Russia right now are ones where their costs are in rubles and they're selling either into China in U.S. dollars or into Europe in euros. So that is a nice formula. You can look at the IP, because they had this joint venture with LM, is pretty open about how that mill in Russia's doing, and it's really been doing very well. So I think that is definitely one of the stronger regions right now in Russia. Frankly, the industrial market has been excellent in Europe this year as well. So it's -- I would say, we actually had our management meeting in Barcelona 3 weeks ago, and the mood was decidedly more upbeat than this time last year, I would say.

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Rudolf A. Hokanson, Barrington Research Associates, Inc., Research Division - MD [8]

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Okay. And could you make any comments in regard to China as to where you think the transition is in the industry of the capacity utilization with the mills that you service and the closing of the less-efficient mills that the government was trying to take out of the market?

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Jonathan W. Painter, Kadant Inc. - CEO, President and Director [9]

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Sure. So a little -- couple of comments, I guess, on China. You can see the bookings in Q4 and Q1 are quite strong. And probably -- the capital bookings are stronger than the underlying demand for paper liner, in particular. So other things are happening. One is that you do have the government closing down mills, and that is moving demand towards people who are customers, the bigger mills. Secondly, the market in China in Q4 had tightened up, prices had moved up pretty strong. Now it got a little choppy, I would say, in Q1 but, in general, mills in China, particularly liner milles, are making quite a good profit right now. I think they're also more aggressive about building because they'll put another, not necessarily a mill that the government's closing, but just a lesser, inefficient mill, out of business. So they are more aggressive, I would say, in terms of building new modern mills and they figure they'll just put some poor guy out of business.

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Operator [10]

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Our next question comes from the line of Walter Liptak from Seaport Global.

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Walter Scott Liptak, Seaport Global Securities LLC, Research Division - MD of Diversified Industrials and Senior Industrials Analyst [11]

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I wanted to ask you a question on the guidance. You beat this quarter pretty nicely, but it looks like you only took numbers up for what you beat for the first quarter. I wonder what -- and the tone seemed a little bit cautious, especially around China. I wonder if you could kind of address that for us.

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Jonathan W. Painter, Kadant Inc. - CEO, President and Director [12]

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Okay, you're right. You're absolutely right. The increase in the guidance is pretty much equal to the beat we had in Q1. I would say, Q1 was quite strong. The tax rate was quite low. We had that high percentage of spares. As we move into the year, we expect to see some of this capital moving through. So even though the revenue will be higher, the gross margins will be lower.

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Michael J. McKenney, Kadant Inc. - CFO and SVP [13]

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Especially, I think, in the second half.

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Jonathan W. Painter, Kadant Inc. - CEO, President and Director [14]

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Yes. Mike [thinks] in the second half, for sure. I think we'll have kind of strong capital shipments in Q2 and Q3, but higher tax rates. That said, to be honest with you, we're pretty conservative and cautious as you probably got from the tone that the -- we've been through volatility in China before, so I don't expect this will continue forever. But it does look like it's not done. I'll also say that.

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Michael J. McKenney, Kadant Inc. - CFO and SVP [15]

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And I would say we had anticipated a good first quarter level of bookings. So that was baked into the forecast that we gave.

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Jonathan W. Painter, Kadant Inc. - CEO, President and Director [16]

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Yes, that's an excellent point. You might remember, Walt, we started talking about strong capital activity in China in Q3 of last year. That's kind of in our thinking, if you will.

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Walter Scott Liptak, Seaport Global Securities LLC, Research Division - MD of Diversified Industrials and Senior Industrials Analyst [17]

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Okay. How -- what's the -- what was the customer make-up in China, is it still the large papermaking companies or is it a more diversified group of customers?

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Jonathan W. Painter, Kadant Inc. - CEO, President and Director [18]

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It's certainly more diversified. If you go back -- I've talked to you in the past about in the kind of '07, '08, '06 period. You had 2 or 3 mills doing almost all the -- 2 or 3 big groups, Nine Dragon, Lee and Man, people like that making up a big part of the activity there. It's much broader now. So the big guys are definitely -- yes, the big guys are definitely participating, but it's a much more diverse customer base, for sure. Yes, that's better. It's definitely better.

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Walter Scott Liptak, Seaport Global Securities LLC, Research Division - MD of Diversified Industrials and Senior Industrials Analyst [19]

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What about the cadence during the quarter? Was it stronger in the first part of the quarter and weaker in the back part of the quarter...

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Jonathan W. Painter, Kadant Inc. - CEO, President and Director [20]

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I mean, the thing I would say on that is, okay, we booked around (inaudible) -- we booked about $11 million in Stock-Prep and about $2 million in our Fluid Handling business. But in April, we booked $6 million. So that's a -- April might be our strongest month of the last 4 months.

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Walter Scott Liptak, Seaport Global Securities LLC, Research Division - MD of Diversified Industrials and Senior Industrials Analyst [21]

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Okay, great. Okay. And then on the parts strength that you saw. A few quarters ago, it was a head scratcher, we couldn't understand why parts were slowing down, and now they're picking back up again. Is there anything that you can point to and say, okay, now I see what's been happening? Or why do you think the parts...

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Jonathan W. Painter, Kadant Inc. - CEO, President and Director [22]

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So -- that's a good question, Walt. I would say you -- often with parts, you have this kind of reversion to the mean type of thing. So when you have a couple of quarters that are weak, it does -- you often sort of catch up. And incidentally, vice versa. So that, I think, is part of it. The increased capital activity is part of it. Sometimes, a fair bit of spare parts gets sold with capital. And the other thing I want to kind of emphasize is our Wood Processing business had extremely strong capital. So North America was largely driven on the parts side by our Wood Processing business.

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Michael J. McKenney, Kadant Inc. - CFO and SVP [23]

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Yes, a very good start to the year.

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Operator [24]

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(Operator Instructions) Our next question comes from the line of Dan Jacome from Sidoti.

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Daniel Andres Jacome, Sidoti & Company, LLC - Research Analyst [25]

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Nice job. I would say if this quarter was a poker hand, I'd say you kind of hit the royal flush here.

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Jonathan W. Painter, Kadant Inc. - CEO, President and Director [26]

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Yes, it was one of those things, everything seemed to turn out right. So you're right.

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Daniel Andres Jacome, Sidoti & Company, LLC - Research Analyst [27]

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Yes. And I know it won't happen every quarter, but definitely encouraging. The year's off to a good start. Just 2 really quick ones. I think you called out the strong pulp markets in North Am were helping you out. Was that correct?

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Jonathan W. Painter, Kadant Inc. - CEO, President and Director [28]

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Could you say that again, Dan?

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Daniel Andres Jacome, Sidoti & Company, LLC - Research Analyst [29]

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I think you called out the pulp market, pulp?

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Michael J. McKenney, Kadant Inc. - CFO and SVP [30]

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Pulp market, Jon.

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Jonathan W. Painter, Kadant Inc. - CEO, President and Director [31]

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We did book some chemical pulping stuff in North America in the first quarter. The virgin pulp market in the U.S. has been pretty good. So it's been pretty good for a couple of years.

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Daniel Andres Jacome, Sidoti & Company, LLC - Research Analyst [32]

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Okay. I mean -- but I'm seeing -- and fluff pulp seems to be the area that has been...

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Jonathan W. Painter, Kadant Inc. - CEO, President and Director [33]

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I'm sorry, fluff pulp? Yes, in general, the fluff pulp market has been good to us. We have a pretty strong market share in certain pieces of equipment for that. So it's relatively good.

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Daniel Andres Jacome, Sidoti & Company, LLC - Research Analyst [34]

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Okay, so it was -- and then on just M&A pipeline, obviously, any updates there? I know if we think about the strategy over the next couple of years, it's important. So just is there any update there?

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Jonathan W. Painter, Kadant Inc. - CEO, President and Director [35]

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Sure. I mean, I think I said it last quarter, and we increased our facility and the prime function of that facility, frankly, is M&A. We have good cash flow on our own. You might remember from our Investor Day in December that the bulk of our growth for the next 5 years, I expect, will be related to acquisitions. So we are actively looking at companies. Obviously, they're never done until they're done. Things go off the rails or don't happen for all kinds of reasons. But we -- I would say we're out there looking around pretty actively. I think I have said it earlier that we are seeing somewhat higher prices than we certainly had over the last 5 years. But I think that we can probably make all those work. But it won't be sort of the 5x EBITDA that we were paying in 2013 and '14.

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Operator [36]

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Our next question comes from the line of Rudy Hokanson from Barrington Research.

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Rudolf A. Hokanson, Barrington Research Associates, Inc., Research Division - MD [37]

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I just want to check on a few things and I just want to make sure I'm reading it correctly. In the press release and also in the comments, when you talked about the active pipeline of projects, was that related to China?

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Jonathan W. Painter, Kadant Inc. - CEO, President and Director [38]

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It is related to China and Russia, I would say. I referred to an active pipeline of projects for both those areas.

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Rudolf A. Hokanson, Barrington Research Associates, Inc., Research Division - MD [39]

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Okay. And the $6 million, the 2 recycled Stock-Prep systems, were those specifically China?

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Jonathan W. Painter, Kadant Inc. - CEO, President and Director [40]

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They were China, yes. Yes. But I guess what I'm saying, Rudy, is we had pretty strong bookings in Q1. I called out that $6 million in Q2, and we still have stuff in the pipeline. Obviously, you never know if you're going to get it. There's a lot of things that could happen, but it's not like we've captured everything we're going to capture, I think.

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Rudolf A. Hokanson, Barrington Research Associates, Inc., Research Division - MD [41]

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Okay. So in other -- the general business conditions are very positive, but you were highlighting some specifics that were in China or China and Russia. Would that be the way to say it?

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Jonathan W. Painter, Kadant Inc. - CEO, President and Director [42]

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Yes. I think the capital side of our business is more heavily weighted to China, in particular; and secondly, Russia. More than North America and Europe proper, if you will.

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Rudolf A. Hokanson, Barrington Research Associates, Inc., Research Division - MD [43]

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Okay. And then in terms of the guidance, after the first quarter, I know you said that you expect the gross margin to come down. Do you expect for the year that it'll still be roughly equal to what it was in '16, around 45.5%? Or will it be a little bit higher?

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Michael J. McKenney, Kadant Inc. - CFO and SVP [44]

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No, Rudy, we're maintaining our guidance. So approximately the same, possibly slightly higher than '16.

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Rudolf A. Hokanson, Barrington Research Associates, Inc., Research Division - MD [45]

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Okay. And that the SG&A also at about 31.5% to 32.5%, even though you are over 33% in this quarter?

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Michael J. McKenney, Kadant Inc. - CFO and SVP [46]

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Yes, correct. We'll get some leverage going forward here when -- as these -- the capital shipments, our revenue increases. So yes, we're going to maintain guidance on the SG&A also.

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Rudolf A. Hokanson, Barrington Research Associates, Inc., Research Division - MD [47]

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Okay. And then when you gave guidance on the interest expense, that was before, I think, you had finalized the terms of your new agreement. And would the net interest expense for the year still be about $800,000, fairly evenly distributed or will it be a little bit lower?

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Michael J. McKenney, Kadant Inc. - CFO and SVP [48]

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I think, actually, Rudy, it'll be a little bit higher. Maybe $250,000 a quarter.

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Rudolf A. Hokanson, Barrington Research Associates, Inc., Research Division - MD [49]

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Okay, $250,000 a quarter. Okay. And then the adjusted rate for the year would be 27% to 28%.

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Michael J. McKenney, Kadant Inc. - CFO and SVP [50]

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Correct. Yes.

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Rudolf A. Hokanson, Barrington Research Associates, Inc., Research Division - MD [51]

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Okay. And what would the adjusted rate have been for this quarter?

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Michael J. McKenney, Kadant Inc. - CFO and SVP [52]

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About 27%. We had a... yes.

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Operator [53]

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At this time, I'm not showing any further questions and would like to turn the call back over to Jonathan Painter for any closing remarks.

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Jonathan W. Painter, Kadant Inc. - CEO, President and Director [54]

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Okay. Thank you, Charlotte. Before I let everyone go, I thought I'd summarize what I think are the key takeaways from the quarter. First, we had excellent performance in Q1 with record bookings, record revenue in bookings for parts and consumables and a strong earnings per share beat. Secondly, as we mentioned, we're seeing strong demand for our capital projects, products in China and Russia. And finally, we're raising our full year guidance with the expectation of achieving record revenue and record earnings per share in 2017. Thanks for joining the call today, and I look forward to updating you next quarter. Thanks very much.

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Operator [55]

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Ladies and gentlemen, thank you for participating in today's conference. This does conclude the program, and you may all disconnect. Everyone, have a great day.