Armtec Infrastructure Inc. Reports Results for the Third Quarter 2012
GUELPH, ON, Nov. 7, 2012 /CNW/ - Armtec Infrastructure Inc. ("Armtec" or the "Company") (TSX: ARF; ARF.DB) today reported financial results for the third quarter ended September 30, 2012.
- Revenue in the quarter of $135.3 million, a decrease of 5.6% or $8.1 million below 2011. Engineered Solutions ("ES") revenue was $54.7 million, 12.2% ahead of the $48.7 million in the same quarter of 2011; Construction and Infrastructure Applications ("CIA") revenue was $80.7 million, a decrease of 14.8% over the same period in the prior year. Year to date, revenue was $345.8 million, an increase of $4.2 million or 1.2% over 2011. ES revenue was $152.0 million, 5.7% higher than the same period of 2011 with CIA products revenue of $193.9 million, representing a decrease of $3.9 million or 2.0% over the prior year;
- Gross margin was $29.2 million, an increase of $6.8 million from $22.4 million in the third quarter of 2011. As a percentage of revenue, gross margin increased to 21.6%, a significant improvement from the 15.7% achieved in the prior year. Year to date, gross margin was $66.2 million, an increase of $27.3 million from the $38.9 million in the same period in 2011. As a percentage of revenue, gross margin increased to 19.2%, a significant improvement from the 11.4% achieved in 2011;
- EBITDA1 was $18.0 million compared to $12.4 million in the same period in 2011. Year to date, EBITDA was $36.3 million, compared to $11.8 million in 2011;
- The Company's ES backlog at the end of September 2012 remains strong at approximately $135 million, an increase of approximately $45 million over September 2011 levels; and
- The Turnaround Plan results to date reflect an estimated EBITDA of $18 million derived from initiatives across all regions of the Company, with the remaining $2 million expected by year-end.
"In the third quarter of 2012, Armtec delivered solid financial results that reflected the continued performance improvements achieved from the Company's Turnaround Plan. Year to date, the Turnaround Plan delivered $18 million of the projected $20 million in savings, with the remaining $2 million targeted by the end of the year," said Mark Anderson, President and Chief Executive Officer. "With the Turnaround Plan coming to an end, management is now focused on the next phase of overall performance improvement to be achieved through the transition to a product based business unit structure providing greater focus on common product operational performance. In spite of the current global economic uncertainty and resulting softness in the company's end use markets, management remains optimistic about Canada's longer term infrastructure needs and expects to offset this adverse impact through gains realized through the implementation of the new business unit structure."
Summary of Results
(in thousands of Canadian dollars except per share amounts)
|Three Months Ended||Nine Months Ended|
|As a % of revenue||21.6%||15.7%||19.2%||11.4%|
|Selling, general and administrative||$||15,104||$||17,414||$||41,613||$||50,573|
|As a % of revenue||11.2%||12.1%||12.0%||14.8%|
|Impairment of assets||$||-||$||50,197||$||-||$||190,219|
|As a % of revenue||-%||35.0%||-%||55.7%|
|Earnings (loss) from operations||$||15,790||$||(46,825)||$||25,798||$||(203,215)|
|As a % of revenue||11.7%||(32.7)%||7.5%||(59.5)%|
|As a % of revenue||9.6%||6.3%||11.0%||6.6%|
|Net earnings (loss) attributable to owners of the Company||$||2,526||$||(52,334)||$||(8,788)||$||(201,274)|
|As a % of revenue||1.9%||(36.5)%||(2.5)%||(58.9)%|
|Diluted earnings (loss) per share||$||0.10||$||(2.18)||$||(0.37)||$||(8.90)|
|As a % of revenue||13.3%||8.6%||10.5%||3.5%|
|Three Months Ended||Nine Months Ended|
(in thousands of Canadian dollars except per share amounts)
|Breakdown of revenue by product lines2:|
|Breakdown of depreciation and amortization by financial statement line item:|
|Cost of sales||$||1,664||$||3,389||$||5,741||$||10,834|
|Selling, general and administrative||1,415||3,178||4,993||10,361|
|Total depreciation and amortization||$||3,079||$||6,567||$||10,734||$||21,195|
Please refer to the section entitled "Non-GAAP Measure" of the separately issued management, discussion and
analysis for the interim period ended September 30, 2012 for the reconciliation of EBITDA.
|2)||Beginning with the first quarter of 2012, the Company has realigned its products within the CIA and ES categories.|
Revenue for the nine months ended September 30, 2012 was $345.8 million, a $4.2 million improvement over $341.6 million in the same period of 2011. Softer demand in the Prairie region was offset by improved volumes in the Pacific region where the Kitimat smelter modernization project has reached full production levels. The Central and Eastern regions revenue levels have remained consistent on a year over year basis.
CIA product revenue to date in 2012 was $193.9 million, representing a slight decline over the same period in 2011 at $197.8 million. The benefit realized from better pricing strategies was offset by softness in demand experienced primarily in municipal and road construction projects and residential markets during the third quarter of 2012. ES project revenue for the first nine months of 2012 was $152.0 million or 5.7% over the $143.8 million in the comparative period of 2011. Improvements in gross margin performance over 2011 continued to be realized in ES projects resulting from a combination of a reduced workforce, enhanced operating practices and an improvement in the mix of projects. The ES backlog at September 30, 2012 was approximately $135 million or $45 million higher than September 2011 levels.
The Turnaround Plan and Next Steps
The Turnaround Plan, announced in the fall of 2011, continued to support stronger operating margins in combination with a slight increase in year to date revenue over 2011 levels. The plan, primarily focused on cost reduction actions, was aimed at generating additional EBITDA of approximately $20 million over a 12 to 24 month period. The results to date in 2012 reflect an estimated EBITDA benefit of $18 million derived from initiatives across all regions of the Company. Approximately 90% of the over 200 action items have been successfully completed with over half of the savings being attributed to improved labour management, particularly in the ES projects across the country. Management believes the remaining $2 million identified under the Turnaround Plan will be achieved by the end of the year.
As 2012 draws to a close and with it, the Turnaround Plan, management has been preparing for the next phase of performance improvement. Under the Turnaround Plan, Armtec commenced the introduction of a product based general manager structure within each of the regions to provide more focus on common product operational performance. As a next step following the Turnaround Plan, Armtec will apply the product focus across the Company transitioning from the current geographically focused structure to a product based structure. Effective January 1, 2013, Armtec will operate in two business units being Precast Concrete Solutions ("Precast") and Drainage Solutions ("Drainage"). Highlights of the new structure include:
- Each business unit will be led by a President reporting to the President and Chief Executive Officer.
- Dennis Lattimore, President, Precast Concrete Solutions, recently joined Armtec and has over 35 years of experience in the precast industry.
- Kevin Young, President, Drainage Solutions, joined Armtec in 2008 and has recently been instrumental in driving our Turnaround Plan in the Central and Prairie regions.
- The business units will continue to expand on the implementation of a general manager structure established under the Turnaround Plan.
- The Company will maintain the current Shared Service Center which will continue to provide transactional and subject-matter support in the areas of health and safety, human resources, finance and information technology. Processes in the Shared Service Centre have been established and refined through the Turnaround Plan allowing Armtec to leverage its size and benefits from the economy of scale removing the need for each business unit to implement its own such services.
The transition to a business unit structure is not anticipated to be a significant change to the business. The manufacturing plants are easily separated into the Precast and Drainage units. There will be a slight increase in the underlying cost structure of the business; however, management expects to offset much of these costs through continued productivity gains resulting from improved processes and further utilization of the current Enterprise Resource Planning system. The one-time transition cost to the business is expected to be minimal. Although Management believes that the next phase of performance improvements will be best accomplished with this new business unit structure, management does not believe that the new structure will generate a significant financial net benefit in 2013. The Company believes this structure will provide the necessary foundation for future success.
The revised business unit model reflects the underlying industry structure and better positions Armtec to maintain industry leading positions in each of these business categories. The narrower scope of each new business unit combined with the use of local market area general managers is expected to facilitate increased focus and improve the speed of planning and execution making Armtec more agile and responsive to the needs of its customers in changing market conditions while still offering the full range of products and solutions within a geographic market area.
Financial reporting will be modified in 2013 to reflect the new operating structure. Armtec will report on Precast Concrete Solutions and Drainage Solutions as operating segments.
THIRD QUARTER RESULTS
Armtec recorded revenue of $135.3 million for the three months ended September 30, 2012, $8.1 million or 5.6% below revenue of $143.4 million for the three months ended September 30, 2011. Revenue from CIA products was $80.7 million for the three month period, a decrease of 14.8% over the same period in 2011. The demand for products used in infrastructure applications softened in the Prairie and Eastern regions where primarily municipal, highways and transportation activities were lower than the third quarter of 2011. Revenues relating to the residential segment in the Central region were also below levels in the same quarter in 2011. Agricultural application volumes remained consistent with 2011 levels despite the stronger volumes realized earlier in the year. Offsetting the demand softness, volumes relating to the natural resource segment were stronger in the Prairie region during the quarter relative to 2011.
ES revenue was $54.7 million in the third quarter of 2012, or 12.2% ahead of the $48.7 million in the same quarter of 2011. The growth in revenue was driven largely by natural resource activities in the Pacific region with the Kitimat smelter modernization project, awarded late in 2011, contributing to increased production levels. Volumes remained consistent for infrastructure applications across all regions while volumes were lower in the commercial segment due to the completion of certain retail warehousing projects at the end of 2011.
Earnings from Operations
Earnings from operations for the three months ended September 30, 2012 were $15.8 million as compared to a $46.8 million loss in the same period of 2011. During the third quarter of 2011, the Company recorded a $50.2 million non-cash impairment charge of which $29.9 million was applied against goodwill and $18.3 million was allocated against certain property, plant and equipment and other intangible assets. Depreciation and amortization levels in the third quarter of 2012 were lower than 2011 levels at approximately $3.1 million as compared to $6.6 million due to the impairments recorded during 2011. Earnings from operations before the impact of the impairment, depreciation and amortization would have reflected earnings of $18.9 million in 2012 compared to $9.9 million for the same quarter of 2011.
The gross margin for the three months ended September 30, 2012 was $29.2 million, an increase of $6.8 million from $22.4 million in the same period of 2011. As a percentage of revenue, the gross margin of 21.6% in the quarter was a marked improvement over the 15.7% achieved in the same period of 2011 and was more in line with historical levels. Before depreciation and amortization, the quarterly gross margin was 22.8% in 2012 compared with 18.0% in 2011.
Despite the volume declines, gross margin performance in the CIA products business improved in the quarter compared to the same three months of 2011, primarily with regard to the steel and plastic products as a result of improved production performance, product mix, raw material costs and pricing levels.
The ES gross margin showed improvement in the three months ended September 30, 2012 as compared to the same period in 2011. While growth in volumes contributed in the quarter, the ES margin improvement continues to be driven by the Turnaround Plan initiatives combined with a better mix of projects. Improvement in ES project performance during the quarter was achieved through production process improvements which translated into reduced costs and better utilization of resources, particularly in the Central region where multiple parking structure projects are in process. The Prairie region has maintained the improvement levels achieved initially under the Turnaround Plan. This region made significant gains during the third quarter of 2011 particularly with regard to labour management. The Kitimat smelter modernization project in the Pacific region continued to achieve expected volumes and gross margin performance in the quarter.
Selling, general and administrative expenses for the three months ended September 30, 2012 were $15.1 million, or $2.3 million lower than 2011 levels. Before depreciation and amortization, selling, general and administration costs were $13.7 million, slightly lower than prior year levels at $14.2 million. The total spend reflects reduced staffing year over year and other cost reduction measures that were part of the identified initiatives under the Turnaround Plan net of the expected costs under the Company's annual incentive plan.
Armtec offers an annual incentive plan to all non-union and certain union employees. The plan is generally based on a combination of targets related to regional and overall Company performance and the achievement of individual objectives. The plan also contains a "circuit breaker" where base conditions must be in place for the plan to be effective, the most significant being the achievement of financial covenants as related to the debt of the Company. As a result of the circuit breaker provision and the refinancing in 2011, no incentives were incurred with respect to the 2011 year. With the senior debt to adjusted EBITDA covenant, under the Brookfield Facility in place and met since June 30, 2012, the annual incentive plan for 2012 is expected to be achieved with an estimated impact on selling, general and administrative expenses of between $5.0 and $6.0 million, of which approximately $2.0 million was recognized in the third quarter and the balance will be recognized in the fourth quarter of 2012.
YEAR TO DATE RESULTS
Armtec recorded revenue of $345.8 million for the first nine months of 2012, $4.2 million or 1.2% ahead of revenue of $341.6 million for the comparative 2011 period. Revenue from CIA products was $193.9 million, a decrease of 2.0% or $3.9 million over the same period in 2011. The Company's agricultural markets, primarily in the Central and Eastern regions, experienced significant volume increases over 2011 levels. The favourable weather conditions at the beginning of the year provided a longer spring installation season as compared to 2011. Softness in infrastructure applications in the Pacific and Prairie regions were offset by the natural resource end use market showing improvement with year over year growth in the energy sector, particularly in the Prairie region.
ES revenue was $152.0 million to date in 2012, or 5.7% higher than the same period of 2011. The stronger revenues were driven largely by the Kitimat smelter modernization project in the Pacific region and rail infrastructure projects in the Central region. Weaker demand was experienced in Central region's soundwall business due to the weak economic conditions in the United States. The Prairie region also experienced lower transportation infrastructure project volumes in 2012 as compared to activity in 2011.
Earnings from Operations
Earnings from operations for the nine months ended September 30, 2012 were $25.8 million as compared to a $203.2 million loss in the same period of 2011. The Company recorded a $190.2 million non-cash impairment charge in 2011 related to the decline in overall enterprise value of the business as compared to the carrying value of net assets. Depreciation and amortization levels in the first nine months of 2012 were lower than 2011 levels at approximately $10.7 million as compared to $21.2 million due to the asset impairments recorded during 2011. Earnings from operations before the impact of the impairment, depreciation and amortization to date in 2012 would have reflected earnings of $36.5 million compared to earnings of $8.2 million in the comparative period of 2011.
The gross margin for the nine months ended September 30, 2012 was $66.2 million, an increase of $27.3 million from $38.9 million in the same period of 2011. As a percentage of revenue, the gross margin of 19.2% for the year to date 2012 was a significant improvement over the 11.4% achieved in the same period of 2011. Before depreciation and amortization, the gross margin was 20.8% in 2012 compared with 14.6% in 2011.
Gross margin performance in the CIA products business improved during the first nine months of 2012 as compared to the same period of 2011 as a result of improved plant operating efficiencies supported by the Turnaround Plan initiatives and improved agricultural tubing installations, particularly during the first quarter of 2012. In addition to lower raw material costs, continued improved pricing and product mix favorably impacted performance across most regions in 2012.
The ES gross margin continued to show marked improvement during 2012 as compared to the same period in 2011 on improved revenue levels. The Turnaround Plan initiatives have supported the significant operational performance improvement in the ES projects. The key contributors to the year over year improvement have been labour management and overhead spend control, particularly in the largest regions of Central and Prairies. During 2011, many of the larger projects achieved lower margins through a combination of lower initial bid margins and operational execution issues. Examples of this include the significant losses incurred on the TTC project and the completion of the Calgary West Light Rail Transit project.
Selling, general and administrative expenses for the nine months ended September 30, 2012 were $41.6 million, or $9.0 million lower than 2011 levels. Before depreciation and amortization, selling, general and administration costs were $36.6 million or $3.6 million lower than prior year levels. The overall reduction in total spend reflects reduced staffing year over year and other cost reduction measures that were part of the identified initiatives under the Turnaround Plan net of approximately $2.0 million in annual incentive program costs. As discussed previously, approximately $5 to $6 million in annual incentive costs will be recognized in the second half of 2012 where no such incentives were recognized in 2011.
Over the past several months, Armtec has seen a slight softening in the demand for its products and solutions. Management believes that this reflects the current global economic uncertainty and its adverse impact on the Company's end use markets across Canada and internationally. Although management remains optimistic regarding Canada's longer term infrastructure needs and the demand for Armtec's products and solutions, construction spending levels are expected to remain softer in the near term. Management expects to offset this negative impact through eventual gains realized in the implementation of the new business unit structure.
Armtec serves a diverse end use market base with each varying differently in terms of demand and activity, mitigating the effect on overall revenue levels.
The outlook for Armtec's end use markets remains mixed:
- Infrastructure activity is expected to remain soft in the near term; however, governments continue to reiterate their commitment to infrastructure renewal;
- Residential market activity is anticipated to remain at low levels relative to historical levels reflecting anticipated single family housing forecasted starts. Despite concerns over a potential slowdown in the condominium market in the Greater Toronto area, multi-unit residential starts continue to show a stable trend;
- Commercial facility construction will benefit from certain projects which are anticipated to offset slower industrial starts;
- Agricultural market activity is heavily influenced by weather and underlying commodity pricing. It is difficult to determine the future budget impact of the crop yields experienced with the dry hot summer conditions; and
- Natural resources markets are expected to remain stable through the balance of 2012, particularly in Western Canada.
Armtec's ES backlog at the end of September 2012 remains strong at approximately $135 million, an increase of approximately $45 million over September 2011 levels. The most significant individual project remains the smelter modernization project in Kitimat, British Columbia. A significant number of parking garage structures, currently in various stages of completion, remain in backlog and will also support revenue levels into 2013. The backlog has been replenished with projects at improved bid margins which will be realized in ES revenue throughout the balance of 2012 with several projects continuing into 2013. The combination of underperforming projects reaching completion, more representative projects in backlog, and the remaining benefits to be derived from the Turnaround Plan are all anticipated to continue to contribute to improved results.
CIA revenue is highly influenced by weather conditions. These product groups remain subject to competitive pricing pressures combined with the challenge of fluctuations in raw material costs. Historical seasonal patterns indicate the first and fourth quarters would be lower than the second and third quarter volumes in the fiscal year. The current outlook indicates that softer volumes will continue for the balance of 2012.
Overall, operational performance in 2012 for CIA products is expected to continue to remain above 2011 levels due to improved manufacturing disciplines, lower raw material costs and improved market pricing.
Armtec is entering its seasonally low period over the next six months. Management believes the remaining $2 million of benefit under the Turnaround Plan will be achieved in the fourth quarter; however, in the comparative fourth quarter of 2011 gains were already realized when the Turnaround Plan was launched and initial actions had commenced. In addition, management expects to incur approximately $5.0 million to $6.0 million in additional annual selling, general and administrative expenses, with approximately $2.8 million incurred in the fourth quarter of 2012 related to the employee incentive plan. There were no incentives recognized during 2011. As a result, management expects fourth quarter results for 2012 to be in line with 2011 levels. In addition, weather conditions during the first quarter of 2012 were favourable and management cannot predict whether this will occur again in 2013 potentially putting some added pressure on the first half results.
The focus of the business in 2013 will be to strengthen the foundation for continued improvements to operational performance and execution through the new business unit structure with a view to achieving more historical earnings levels in light of the uncertain current economic outlook.
CONFERENCE CALL AND WEBCAST
Management will host a conference call at 10:00 a.m. (ET) on Thursday, November 8, 2012 to discuss the results. Investors who wish to participate can access the call using the following numbers: 416-644-3415 or 1-877-974-0445. The call will be webcast live and archived on Armtec's website at www.armtec.com.
A taped rebroadcast will be available to listeners following the call until 12:00 a.m. on Thursday, November 15, 2012. To access the rebroadcast, please dial 416-640-1917 or 1-877-289-8525 and quote the passcode 4567764#.
ABOUT ARMTEC INFRASTRUCTURE INC.
Armtec is a leading manufacturer and marketer of a comprehensive range of infrastructure products and engineered construction solutions for customers in a diverse cross-section of industries that are located in every region of Canada, as well as in selected markets globally. These markets include Canada's national and regional public infrastructure markets and private sector markets in agricultural drainage, commercial building, residential construction and natural resources. Operating through its network of regional offices and production facilities across the country, Armtec's broad range of engineered solutions include products for drainage, bridge applications, soil retention, rehabilitation and water management systems including corrugated high-density polyethylene, corrugated steel and concrete pipe; an array of architectural and structural precast and pre-stressed concrete products from steps, paving stones, slabs and wall panels to highly engineered structural components designed and installed for projects such as bridges, sports venues and parking garages; and a full suite of noise barriers, acoustic enclosure and wall systems along with associated retaining wall and traffic barrier systems.
Earnings before Interest, Taxes, Depreciation and Amortization
References to EBITDA are to earnings before finance cost, taxes (other than capital taxes), depreciation and amortization, certain non-recurring expenses and certain non-cash amounts. Management believes that in addition to net earnings, EBITDA is a useful supplemental measure of cash available for dividends prior to debt service, changes in working capital, capital expenditures and income taxes. However, EBITDA is not a recognized measure under GAAP. Investors are cautioned that EBITDA should not be construed as an alternative to net and comprehensive earnings determined in accordance with GAAP as an indicator of Armtec's performance or as an alternative to cash flows from operating, investing and financing activities as a measure of Armtec's liquidity and cash flows. Armtec's method of calculating EBITDA may differ from the methods used by other issuers and, accordingly, Armtec's EBITDA may not be comparable to similarly named measures used by other issuers.
RISKS AND UNCERTAINTIES
Armtec is subject to certain risks and uncertainties that could have a material adverse effect on Armtec's results of operations, business prospects, financial condition, dividends to shareholders and the trading price of Armtec's shares. These uncertainties and risks include, but are not limited to: capital and liquidity risk; access to bonding and letters of credit; credit risk; seasonality and adverse weather; existing legal proceedings; industry cyclicality; competition; acquisition and expansion risk; current economic conditions; reduction in demand for products; information management; change management; risk of future legal proceedings; relationships with suppliers; lack of long-term agreements; expiration of rights under license and distribution arrangements; availability and price volatility of raw materials; product liability; intellectual property; reliance on key personnel; labour markets; environmental; collective bargaining; pension plans; currency fluctuations; interest rates; uninsured and underinsured losses; operating hazards; securities laws compliance and corporate governance standards; income tax and other taxes; geographical risk; and geopolitical. Dividends are not guaranteed. Further information about these and other risks and uncertainties can be found in the disclosure documents filed by Armtec Infrastructure Inc. with the securities regulatory authorities, available at www.sedar.com.
This news release contains "forward-looking" statements (including those set out under the heading "Overview", "Year to Date Quarter Results" and "Outlook" and those relating to timing of EBITDA improvement target; timing of the remaining improvement target; timing of international CIA volumes; expectation that annual incentive plan be realized; the future impact of the annual incentive plan on selling, general and administrative expenses; the timing of delivering the remaining improvements under the Company's Turnaround Plan; backlog levels; improved margins in the current backlog; near term demand for CIA products; future infrastructure spending levels; and the outlook for Armtec's markets) within the meaning of applicable securities legislation which involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors which may cause the actual results, events, performance or achievements of Armtec or industry results, to be materially different from any future results, events, performance or achievements expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements typically contain such words or phrases as "may", "outlook", "objective", "intend", "estimate", "anticipate", "should", "could", "would", "will", "expect", "believe", "plan" and other similar terminology suggesting future outcomes or events. Forward-looking statements reflect current expectations regarding future results, events, performance and achievements and are based on information currently available to Armtec's management, anticipated operating and financial results of Armtec, and current and anticipated market conditions.
Forward-looking statements involve numerous assumptions and should not be read as guarantees of future results, events, performance or achievements. Such statements will not necessarily be accurate indications of whether or not such future results, events, performance or achievements will be achieved. You should not unduly rely on forward-looking statements as a number of factors, many of which are beyond the control of Armtec, could cause actual results, events, performance or achievements to differ materially from the results, events, performance or achievements discussed in the forward-looking statements, including, but not limited to the factors discussed in Armtec's materials filed with the Canadian securities regulatory authorities from time to time. Although the forward-looking statements contained in this news release are based upon what management of Armtec believes are reasonable assumptions, Armtec cannot assure investors that actual results, events, performance or achievements will be consistent with these forward-looking statements. All forward-looking statements in this news release are qualified by these cautionary statements. These forward-looking statements are made as of the date of this news release and, except as required by applicable law, Armtec assumes no obligation to update or revise them to reflect new events or circumstances.
Capitalized terms that are not otherwise defined in this news release shall have the meanings given to them in Armtec's management's discussion and analysis for the three and nine months ended September 30, 2012.
SOURCE: Armtec Infrastructure Inc.For further information:
Vice President and Corporate Secretary
Tel: (519) 822-0210
Fax: (519) 822-8894