Thursday, April 22, 2010

L.B. Foster's income down, but backlog rises in first quarter

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L.B. Foster Co. came out of the first quarter with a record quarterly backlog, though revenue and earnings for the period were down.

The company reported net income of $1.8 million or $0.17 per diluted share in the quarter, compared to $3.0 million or $0.29 per diluted share in the first quarter of 2009. First-quarter sales declined 19.3% to $82.0 million from $101.6 million in the prior-year quarter.

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“While sales were down across all segments in the first quarter of 2010, we were pleased with the business booked during the quarter and our backlog was substantially higher at the end of the first quarter than it was a year ago,” said Stan Hasselbusch, president and CEO. “Additionally, cost controls and pay for performance incentive plans helped mitigate the negative impact to income.

“While business activity continues to be inconsistent, especially in the industrial markets, we have seen a general strengthening in activity in most of our businesses,” said Hasselbusch. “Bookings for the quarter were $106.1 million compared to $99.9 million last year, a 6.2% increase. Backlog was $204.8 million, up 53.1% from last year, which corroborates the strengthening mentioned above. I am pleased to report that our first-quarter backlog is the largest we have ever had. In March, we acquired certain assets of Interlocking Deck Systems International, LLC, a fabricator of Bridge Products, which will fit nicely in our existing Fabricated Products Division.”