Richelieu announces its Q4 and 2009 financial results and a 12.5% increase in
the dividend


    
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    -   For the fourth quarter ended November 30, 2009, Richelieu recorded
        net earnings of $0.45 per share, compared with $0.46 per share for
        the corresponding quarter of 2008.

    -   The EBITDA margin improved over the corresponding quarter of 2008 to
        reach 14.5%.

    -   For 2009, Richelieu achieved net earnings of $30.4 million or $1.38
        per share on consolidated sales of $424.4 million. Cash flows from
        operating activities totalled $57.4 million, an increase of 39.2%.

    -   The Company remains in an excellent financial position with a
        positive net cash balance of $47.8 million, a working capital of
        $150.5 million for a current ratio of 4.7:1 and almost no debt.

    -   Richelieu further expanded its network with two new distribution
        centre start-ups in the United States: Louisville (Kentucky) and
        Cincinnati (Ohio), and the acquisition of the principal assets of
        Paint Direct Inc. (Calgary, Alberta).

    -   Event subsequent to November 30, 2009 - Richelieu closed another
        acquisition in the United States: Woodland Specialties (Syracuse,
        New York).

    -   Increase of 12.5% in the dividend which rises from $0.08 to $0.09 -
        a dividend of $0.09 per share is payable on February 25, 2010 to
        shareholders of record as at February 11, 2010.
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    
</pre>
<p/>
<p>TSX: RCH</p>
<p/>
<p><location>MONTREAL</location>, <chron>Jan. 28</chron> /CNW Telbec/ - In 2009, Richelieu's operations continued to generate substantial cash flows - the Company further strengthened its balance sheet and expanded its network which now comprises 50 centres in <location>North America</location>. In view of the economic crisis that caused a decrease in residential and commercial renovation spending in the <location>United States</location>, Western and Central <location>Canada</location>, Richelieu recorded a satisfactory financial performance, although its results showed a decline. The Company posted net earnings of <money>$30.4 million</money> or <money>$1.38</money> per share on consolidated sales of <money>$424.4 million</money> for 2009, compared with net earnings of <money>$35.6 million</money> or <money>$1.56</money> per share on consolidated sales of <money>$441.4 million</money> for the previous year.</p>
<p>"Our financial results attest to the validity of the strategy implemented in view of the economic crisis, specifically tight expense reduction measures, a focus on rigorous operational management and the efficiency of the integrated supply chain management for better inventory control and the optimization of customer service. Despite a more challenging environment, we continued to increase our market share and customer base throughout the year, which bodes well for our future growth once the economy further recovers," indicated <person>Richard Lord</person>, President and Chief Executive Officer of Richelieu.</p>
<p/>
<p>ANALYSIS OF OPERATING RESULTS FOR THE YEAR ENDED <chron>NOVEMBER 30, 2009</chron> COMPARED WITH THE YEAR ENDED <chron>NOVEMBER 30, 2008</chron></p>
<p/>
<p>For the year ended <chron>November 30, 2009</chron>, Richelieu recorded a performance that was all the more satisfactory since the year's difficult conditions caused a slowdown, among others, in the residential and commercial renovation industry, which is the Company's primary source of growth. The <location>United States</location>, Western and Central <location>Canada</location> were more affected by this downturn, whereas Eastern <location>Canada</location> was relatively less so, enabling Richelieu to achieve growth in this market. Despite this challenging context, the Company maintained a good business volume and recorded consolidated sales of <money>$424.4 million</money> for 2009, a decrease of 3.9% from the previous year, of which a 4.5% internal decrease, whereas the growth-by-acquisition was 0.6% (Top Supplies, Inc. ("Top Supplies"), North Carolina, acquired in <chron>April 2008</chron> - Acroma Sales Ltd. ("Acroma"), British Columbia, acquired in <chron>July 2008</chron> - Paint Direct Inc., Alberta, acquired on <chron>November 4</chron>, 2009).</p>
<p>The average annual growth in consolidated sales stood at 5.8% for the last five years.</p>
<p>Sales to manufacturers amounted to <money>$345.2 million</money> in 2009, down from <money>$363.2 million</money> in 2008. This 5.0% decline is due primarily to the economic context and more difficult export conditions affecting Canadian manufacturers. Conversely, sales to hardware retailers and renovation superstores, recorded mostly in <location>Canada</location>, grew by 1.2% to <money>$79.1 million</money> in 2009. The most significant increase in the retailers market was posted in Western <location>Canada</location> through market penetration efforts made in recent years.</p>
<p>In <location>Canada</location>, sales amounted to <money>$356.6 million</money> in 2009, compared with <money>$365.0 million</money> in 2008, a decline of 2.3%, of which a 2.8% internal decrease and a 0.5% growth mainly from the acquisition of Acroma. Sales in <location>Canada</location> accounted for 84.0% of 2009 consolidated sales, compared with 82.7% in 2008.</p>
<p>In the <location>United States</location>, sales totalled US$58.5 million, down 19.9% from the previous year. This decline is attributable to a 20.6% internal decrease, whereas the growth from the contribution of Top Supplies was 0.7%. On account of the exchange rate, sales in the <location>United States</location> amounted to CA$67.7 million, compared with CA$76.4 million for 2008, thereby representing 16.0% of 2009 consolidated sales, versus 17.3% in 2008.</p>
<p>Earnings before income taxes, interest, amortization and non-controlling interest (EBITDA) amounted to <money>$51.3 million</money>, down 11.9% from 2008. During the first half, Richelieu's gross margin declined due to the market penetration costs incurred in the first quarter to enhance its offering and presence in the retailers market and to the increase in supply costs that affected second-quarter results. This increase was caused by the weak Canadian dollar in relation to the U.S. dollar during the first quarter, whereas selling prices could not be adjusted accordingly in light of the sudden strengthening of the Canadian dollar in the second quarter. These factors were offset in the second half by an adjustment of selling prices and an improvement in the gross margin in the <location>United States</location> resulting from the mix of products sold. Thus, Richelieu's 2009 gross profit margin was relatively equivalent to that of the previous year. In a more challenging business context, the Company redoubled its efforts with respect to cost control and the rigorous management of selling prices. Considering the year's sales decrease and the exchange loss incurred during the year (versus an exchange gain in 2008) as a result of the strong fluctuations in the Canadian dollar/U.S. dollar exchange rate, the 2009 EBITDA margin stood at 12.1%, down 1.1% from 2008.</p>
<p>The average annual EBITDA growth stood at 3.4% for the last five years.</p>
<p>Amortization of capital assets increased by <money>$0.9 million</money> due primarily to the expansion completed in 2008, whereas amortization of intangible assets was relatively stable compared with 2008, at <money>$1.3 million</money>.</p>
<p>Income taxes amounted to <money>$14.2 million</money>, down by <money>$2.6 million</money> from 2008, mainly reflecting the decline in earnings and the gradual reduction in the Canadian tax rate effective <chron>January 1, 2008</chron>.</p>
<p>Richelieu posted net earnings of <money>$30.4 million</money> for 2009, down 14.6% from 2008. They represented 7.2% of consolidated sales, compared with 8.1% the previous year. Earnings per share amounted to <money>$1.38</money> (basic and diluted), versus <money>$1.56</money> (basic and diluted) for 2008; the average number of shares outstanding has decreased by approximately 4% over the past 12 months due to the purchase of common shares under Richelieu's normal course issuer bid.</p>
<p>The average annual growth in consolidated net earnings stood at 3.1% for the last five years.</p>
<p>On account of a negative adjustment of <money>$7.8 million</money> on translation of the financial statements of the self-sustaining subsidiary in the <location>United States</location>, comprehensive income totalled <money>$22.6 million</money> for 2009.</p>
<p/>
<pre>
    
    Fourth quarter ended November 30, 2009
    --------------------------------------
    
</pre>
<p/>
<p>In the fourth quarter, Richelieu improved several of its performance indicators compared with the first three quarters of 2009 and achieved efficiency gains from market development, product mix and inventory management and expense control. The Company recorded good results, despite the difficult economic conditions that continued to affect the <location>United States</location> and Western <location>Canada</location> and caused a slowdown from the same period of the previous year, whereas the Eastern Canadian market yielded a slight growth over the same period of the previous year. Fourth-quarter consolidated sales totalled <money>$110.7 million</money>, down 6.7% from the corresponding period of 2008. This variation came from a 6.8% internal decrease and a 0.1% growth reflecting the contribution of Paint Direct acquired in the fourth quarter.</p>
<p>Earnings before income taxes, interest, amortization and non-controlling interest (EBITDA) amounted to <money>$16.1 million</money>, down 4.9% from <money>$16.9 million</money> for the fourth quarter of 2008. The gross profit margin improved over the same quarter of 2008. Canadian distribution and manufacturing operations generated a gross margin equivalent to the corresponding quarter of the previous year, whereas U.S. operations yielded a higher gross margin than the same quarter of the previous year due to the mix of products sold. The EBITDA margin therefore improved to 14.5% from 14.2% in the same quarter of 2008. In addition to the improvement in the gross margin, this positive variation reflects the reduction in fixed expenses resulting from the implementation of cost-cutting measures.</p>
<p>Net earnings amounted to <money>$9.9 million</money>, down 3.5% from the fourth quarter of the previous year. Driven by the factors indicated for the EBITDA margin, the net profit margin improved to 8.9% from 8.6% for the last three months of the previous year. Earnings per share amounted to <money>$0.45</money> (basic and diluted), compared with <money>$0.46</money> (basic and diluted) for the fourth quarter of 2008, a decrease of 2.2%.</p>
<p>Cash flows from operating activities (before net change in non-cash working capital balances related to operations) amounted to <money>$10.7 million</money> or <money>$0.48</money> per share, compared with <money>$12.6 million</money> or <money>$0.55</money> per share for the fourth quarter of 2008, mainly reflecting the decrease in net earnings and variation in future income taxes. In the current context of slower demand, the Company concentrated on supply management, enabling it to reduce its inventories while maintaining excellent customer service. Consequently, operating activities provided cash flows of <money>$18.6 million</money>, up from <money>$14.6 million</money> for the corresponding period of the previous year.</p>
<p>Financing activities used net cash flows of <money>$5.9 million</money> to pay <money>$1.8 million</money> in shareholder dividends and to purchase common shares under the normal course issuer bid for a consideration of <money>$4.1 million</money> during the fourth quarter.</p>
<p>Investing activities used cash flows of <money>$1.2 million</money>, including <money>$0.7 million</money> for the acquisition of Paint Direct on <chron>November 4, 2009</chron> and <money>$0.5 million</money> for various capital assets.</p>
<p/>
<p>FINANCIAL POSITION</p>
<p/>
<p>Analysis of principal cash flows for 2009</p>
<p/>
<p>Operating activities provided cash flows (before net change in non-cash working capital balances related to operations) of <money>$37.1 million</money> or <money>$1.69</money> per share, compared with <money>$42.9 million</money> or <money>$1.88</money> per share for 2008, mainly reflecting the decline in net earnings and changes in capital assets and future income taxes. Net change in non-cash working capital balances related to operations represented a cash inflow of <money>$20.3 million</money>, as opposed to a cash outflow of <money>$1.7 million</money> for the previous year. This variation is due primarily to the substantial reduction in inventories and accounts receivable in 2009. Consequently, operating activities provided cash flows of <money>$57.4 million</money> for 2009, compared with <money>$41.2 million</money> for 2008.</p>
<p>During 2009, Richelieu paid a total of <money>$7.0 million</money> in shareholder dividends, representing 23% of the year's net earnings and relatively equivalent to the amount paid the previous year. The Company purchased common shares for cancellation for <money>$4.2 million</money> in 2009, compared with a common share repurchase of <money>$20.1 million</money> in 2008. During the previous year, the Company had repaid <money>$7.4 million</money> of long-term debt, whereas it repaid <money>$36,000</money> of long-term debt in 2009. Financing activities thus used total cash flows of <money>$11.2 million</money> in 2009, compared with <money>$34.6 million</money> the previous year.</p>
<p>During the year, Richelieu invested <money>$3.6 million</money>, including <money>$2.9 million</money> mainly in displays targeted to renovation superstores, computer equipment and rolling stock for warehouses, and <money>$0.7 million</money> in the fourth-quarter acquisition of the distributor Paint Direct Inc.</p>
<p>As at <chron>November 30, 2009</chron>, Richelieu had substantial cash and cash equivalents, which amounted to <money>$48.4 million</money>, compared with <money>$6.1 million</money> as at <chron>November 30, 2008</chron>. The Company also posted a working capital of <money>$150.5 million</money> for a current ratio of 4.7:1, compared with <money>$130.9 million</money> and a 4.3:1 ratio at the end of the previous year.</p>
<p>Richelieu estimates that it has the capital resources needed to fulfill its commitments and respect its ongoing obligations in 2010. Its cash flows from operating activities should suffice for the funding requirements arising from its growth strategy and its financing and investing activities planned for the year ending <chron>November 30, 2010</chron>. Furthermore, Richelieu has an authorized line of credit of <money>$26.0 million</money>, renewable annually and bearing interest at the bank's prime rate, and has obtained a new authorized and renewable line of credit of US$5 million bearing interest at the bank's prime rate plus 2%. These lines of credit were unused as at <chron>November 30, 2009</chron>. In addition, the Company could obtain access to other outside financing if necessary.</p>
<p/>
<p>Balance sheet analysis as at <chron>November 30, 2009</chron></p>
<p/>
<p>Total assets amounted to <money>$286.5 million</money> as at <chron>November 30, 2009</chron>, compared with <money>$273.5 million</money> a year earlier, an increase of <money>$13.0 million</money> or 4.8%. The acquisition of Paint Direct represents assets of <money>$1.2 million</money>. As at <chron>November 30, 2009</chron>, current assets were up by <money>$21.0 million</money> over a year earlier, reflecting a <money>$42.3 million</money> increase in cash and cash equivalents, whereas inventories were down by <money>$15.9 million</money> and accounts receivable by <money>$4.4 million</money>.</p>
<p>Richelieu's debt remained almost nil, at <money>$0.7 million</money>. Deducting cash and cash equivalents, the Company therefore had total cash net of debt of <money>$47.8 million</money> at the end of 2009. Thus, Richelieu continues to benefit from a healthy and solid financial position, enabling it to pursue its business strategy, particularly by way of business acquisitions in its sector and distribution centre start-ups in <location>North America</location>.</p>
<p>Shareholders' equity totalled <money>$240.5 million</money> as at <chron>November 30, 2009</chron>, up from <money>$228.2 million</money> as at <chron>November 30, 2008</chron>; this <money>$12.3 million</money> or 5.4% increase reflects the <money>$19.4 million</money> growth in retained earnings which amounted to <money>$224.0 million</money> as at <chron>November 30, 2009</chron> and a contributed surplus of <money>$3.9 million</money>, less accumulated other comprehensive income of <money>$4.3 million</money>. The book value per share was <money>$11.04</money> at the end of 2009, compared with <money>$10.39</money> as at <chron>November 30, 2008</chron>.</p>
<p>The total interest-bearing debt to shareholders' equity ratio was stable at 0.3% as at <chron>November 30, 2009</chron>.</p>
<p/>
<p>Events subsequent to <chron>November 30, 2009</chron></p>
<p/>
<p>On <chron>December 1, 2009</chron>, the Company acquired the principal net assets of Woodland Specialties Inc. for a consideration of <money>$0.5 million</money>, excluding acquisition fees. Based in <location>Syracuse</location> (New York, U.S.), Woodland is a distributor of hardware products, high-pressure laminates, finishing products and other complementary products targeted mainly to kitchen cabinet makers and the commercial woodworking segment.</p>
<p>On <chron>December 29, 2009</chron>, the Company decided to discontinue its ceramic distribution activities and entered into a selling agreement to dispose of its inventories for a conditional consideration of <money>$2.8 million</money>. The closing date of this transaction is scheduled for <chron>January 29, 2010</chron>. For the year ended <chron>November 30, 2009</chron>, sales of the ceramic distribution activities amounted to <money>$8.8 million</money>.</p>
<p/>
<pre>
    
    Profile as at January 28, 2010
    ------------------------------
    
</pre>
<p/>
<p>Richelieu is a leading North American distributor, importer and manufacturer of specialty hardware and complementary products. Its products are targeted to an extensive customer base of kitchen and bathroom cabinet, furniture, and window and door manufacturers plus the residential and commercial woodworking industry, as well as a large customer base of hardware retailers, including renovation superstores. Richelieu offers customers a broad mix of high-end products sourced from manufacturers around the world. Its product selection consists of more than 65,000 different items targeted to a base of over 40,000 customers who are served by 50 centres in <location>North America</location> - 30 distribution centres across <location>Canada</location>, 18 in the <location>United States</location> and two manufacturing plants in <location>Canada</location>, specifically Cedan Industries Inc. which specializes in the manufacture of a wide variety of veneer sheets and edgebanding products, and Menuiserie des Pins Ltée which manufactures components for the window and door industry and a broad selection of decorative mouldings.</p>
<p/>
<pre>
    
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    The Management's Report for the year ended November 30, 2009, along with
    the audited consolidated financial statements and accompanying notes, are
    filed as of today on SEDAR (www.sedar.com).
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    
</pre>
<p/>
<p>Notes to readers - Richelieu uses earnings before income taxes, interest, amortization and non-controlling interest ("EBITDA") because this measure enables management to assess the Company's operational performance. This measure is a widely accepted financial indicator of a company's ability to service and incur debt. However, EBITDA should not be considered by an investor as an alternative to operating income or net earnings, an indicator of operating performance or cash flows, or as a measure of liquidity. Because EBITDA is not a standardized measurement as prescribed by GAAP, it may not be comparable to the EBITDA of other companies. Certain statements set forth in this press release, such as statements about the growth outlook, constitute forward-looking statements. In some cases, these statements are identified by the use of terms such as "may", "could", "might", "intend", "should", "expect", "project", "plan", "believe", "estimate" or the negative form of these expressions or other comparable variants. These statements are based on the information available at the time they are written, on assumptions made by management and on the expectations of management, acting in good faith, regarding future events, including those relating to economic conditions, fluctuations in exchange rates and operating expenses, and the absence of unusual events entailing supplementary expenditures. Although management considers these assumptions and expectations reasonable based on the information available at the time they are written, they could prove inaccurate. Forward-looking statements are also subject, by their very nature, to known and unknown risks and uncertainties such as those related to the industry, acquisitions, labour relations, credit, key officers, supply, product liability, and other factors set forth in the Management's Report included in the Company's 2008 Annual Report as well as its Annual Information Form, which are available on the System for Electronic Document Analysis and Retrieval (SEDAR) website at <a href="http://www.sedar.com">www.sedar.com</a>. Richelieu's actual results could differ materially from those indicated or underlying these forward-looking statements. The reader is therefore recommended not to unduly rely on these forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements do not reflect the potential impact of special items, any business combination or any other transaction that may be announced or occur subsequent to the date hereof. Richelieu undertakes no obligation to update or revise the forward-looking statements to account for new events or new circumstances, except where provided for by applicable legislation.</p>
<p/>
<pre>
    
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    CONFERENCE CALL - JANUARY 28, 2010 AT 2:30 P.M. (EASTERN TIME)
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    
</pre>
<p/>
<p>Financial analysts and investors interested in participating in the conference call on Richelieu's results to be held at <chron>2:30 p.m.</chron> on <chron>January 28, 2010</chron> can dial 1-888-231-8191 a few minutes before the start of the call. For those unable to participate, a taped rebroadcast will be available as of <chron>5:30 p.m.</chron> on <chron>January 28, 2010</chron> until midnight on <chron>February 4, 2010</chron>, by dialing 1-800-642-1687, access code: 50855970. Members of the media are invited to listen in.</p>
<pre>
    
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Photos are available under "About Richelieu" - "Media" section at
    www.richelieu.com.
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------


    Consolidated statements of earnings
    (in thousands of dollars, except per-share amounts)

                                               12 Months          3 Months
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Periods ended November 30                2009     2008     2009     2008
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                $        $        $        $
                                              (audited)        (unaudited)

    Sales                                 424,375  441,428  110,706  118,702
    Cost of sales and warehouse,
     selling and administrative expenses  373,083  383,180   94,648  101,813
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Earnings before the following          51,292   58,248   16,058   16,889
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Amortization of capital assets          5,063    4,159    1,037      977
    Amortization of intangible assets       1,348    1,299      545      573
    Interest, net                               -      104       64       (2)
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                            6,411    5,562    1,646    1,548
    Earnings before income taxes and
     non-controlling interest              44,881   52,686   14,412   15,341
    Income taxes                           14,183   16,749    4,421    4,928
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Earnings before non-controlling
     interest                              30,698   35,937    9,991   10,413
    Non-controlling interest                  294      330      111      173
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Net earnings                           30,404   35,607    9,880   10,240

    Earnings per share
      Basic                                  1.38     1.56     0.45     0.46
      Diluted                                1.38     1.56     0.45     0.46



    Consolidated statements of retained earnings
    (in thousands of dollars)

                                               12 Months          3 Months
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Periods ended November 30                2009     2008     2009     2008
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                $        $        $        $
                                              (audited)        (unaudited)

    Net earnings                           30,404   35,607    9,880   10,240
    Retained earnings, beginning
     of period                            204,591  195,511  219,784  206,473
    Dividends                              (7,032)  (7,301)  (1,758)  (1,805)
    Premium on redemption of common
     shares for cancellation               (3,977) (19,226)  (3,920) (10,317)
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Retained earnings, end of period      223,986  204,591  223,986  204,591
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------


    Consolidated statements of comprehensive income
    (in thousands of dollars)

                                               12 Months          3 Months
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Periods ended November 30                2009     2008     2009     2008
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                $        $        $        $
                                              (audited)        (unaudited)

    Net earnings                           30,404   35,607    9,880   10,240
    Components of comprehensive income:
    Change in fair value of derivatives
     designated as cash flow hedges,
     net of income taxes                        -        -        -     (192)
    Translation adjustment of the net
     investment in self-sustaining
     foreign operations                    (7,825)   9,698   (1,683)   7,665
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Comprehensive income                   22,579   45,305    8,197   17,713
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------


    Consolidated statements of cash flows
    (in thousands of dollars)

                                               12 Months          3 Months
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Periods ended November 30                2009     2008     2009     2008
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                $        $        $        $
                                              (audited)        (unaudited)

    OPERATING ACTIVITIES
    Net earnings                           30,404   35,607    9,880   10,240
    Non-cash items
      Amortization of capital assets        5,063    4,159    1,037      977
      Amortization of intangible assets     1,348    1,299      545      573
      Future income taxes                    (885)     457   (1,111)     407
      Non-controlling interest                294      330      111      173
      Stock-based compensation expense        885    1,055      212      264
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                           37,109   42,907   10,674   12,634
    Net change in non-cash working
     capital balances related to
     operations                            20,257   (1,686)   7,972    1,934
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                           57,366   41,221   18,646   14,568
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------

    FINANCING ACTIVITIES
    Repayment of long-term debt               (36)  (7,401)       -   (7,195)
    Dividends paid                         (7,032)  (7,301)  (1,758)  (1,805)
    Issue of common shares                      8      203        8       14
    Redemption of common shares for
     cancellation                          (4,176) (20,124)  (4,116) (10,835)
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                          (11,236) (34,623)  (5,866) (19,821)
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------

    INVESTING ACTIVITIES
    Business acquisitions                    (706)  (1,094)    (706)     (44)
    Additions to capital assets            (2,912)  (7,277)    (467)  (2,002)
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                           (3,618)  (8,371)  (1,173)  (2,046)
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Effect of exchange rate fluctuations
     on cash and cash equivalents            (196)      20     (165)     126
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Net change in cash and cash
     equivalents                           42,316   (1,753)  11,442   (7,173)
    Cash and cash equivalents,
     beginning of the period                6,126    7,879   37,000   13,299
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Cash and cash equivalents,
     end of the period                     48,442    6,126   48,442    6,126
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Supplemental information
    Income taxes paid                      15,269   17,149    3,324    4,071
    Interest paid                            (129)     458      (24)       1



    Consolidated balance sheets
    (in thousands of dollars) (audited)

    As at November 30                                     2009          2008
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                             $             $

    ASSETS
    Current assets
    Cash and cash equivalents                           48,442         6,126
    Accounts receivable                                 55,793        60,236
    Inventories                                         87,058       102,963
    Prepaid expenses                                       327         1,273
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                       191,620       170,598
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Capital assets                                      19,569        21,915
    Intangible assets                                   12,853        15,199
    Goodwill                                            62,449        65,772
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                       286,491       273,484
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------

    LIABILITIES AND SHAREHOLDERS' EQUITY
    Current liabilities
    Accounts payable and accrued liabilities            40,108        38,774
    Income taxes payable                                   676           681
    Current portion of long-term debt                      351           278
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                        41,135        39,773
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Long-term debt                                         317           371
    Future income taxes                                  1,407         2,308
    Non-controlling interest                             3,132         2,838
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                        45,991        45,250
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Shareholders' equity
    Capital stock                                       16,916        17,105
    Contributed surplus                                  3,922         3,037
    Retained earnings                                  223,986       204,591
    Accumulated other comprehensive income              (4,324)        3,501
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                       240,500       228,234
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                       286,491       273,484
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    

For further information: For further information: Richard Lord, President and Chief Executive Officer; Alain Giasson, Vice-President and Chief Financial Officer, (514) 336-4144; www.richelieu.com


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