22.4.2004: Meldung: The Timberland Comp.: Record First Quarter Revenue and Earnings

Timberland Reports Record First Quarter Revenue and Earnings
Wednesday April 21, 7:00 am ET

STRATHAM, N.H.--April 21, 2004--The Timberland Company (NYSE: TBL - News) today reported first quarter net income of $31.1 million and diluted earnings per share (EPS) of $0.87, compared with first quarter 2003 net income of $19.3 million and diluted EPS of $0.53.

* First quarter revenue increased 18.7% to $321.8 million, driven by strong gains across global markets. International results (+28.7% or +14.6% in constant dollars) reflected double-digit constant dollar sales gains in Europe and Asia and continued progress in key markets such as Canada. U.S. revenue growth (+9.0%) benefited from strong wholesale results (+7.1%) and continued gains in Timberland"s consumer direct business (+15.1% on a 6.1% comparable store sales increase). Overall revenue growth benefited from favorable foreign exchange rate changes -- which added $18.9 million (or 7.0%) to first quarter revenue - and from additional selling days in Q1 2004, compared with the prior year.
* Global footwear revenue expanded 23.6% to $239.4 million, driven by strong growth in men"s and women"s casual, boots and kids" categories. Global apparel and accessories revenue grew 7.6% to $79.3 million, driven by gains in Asian and U.S. Timberland® brand apparel, which offset constant dollar declines in European and U.S. Timberland PRO® series apparel.
* Operating profit for the quarter increased 61.7% to $47.8 million, and operating margin rose 3.9 percentage points to 14.8%. Profit gains reflected strong revenue growth and significant improvement in gross margin, which benefited from favorable product mix, lower product related costs and favorable foreign exchange rate changes. For the quarter, foreign exchange rate changes contributed approximately $12.8 million to operating profit, which was leveraged to support continued investments against strategic priorities, including international retail expansion, product development initiatives and global brand building efforts.
* EPS for the quarter expanded 64.2% to $0.87, reflecting profit gains and continued benefits from share repurchases. In the first quarter, the Company bought back 333 thousand shares at a total cost of $20.1 million. The Company currently has 4.3 million shares remaining under existing share repurchase programs.
* Timberland ended the quarter with $160.6 million in cash and no debt outstanding while driving improvements in annual inventory turns and receivables management. Timberland"s annualized return on capital reached 32.1%.

Jeffrey B. Swartz, Timberland"s President and Chief Executive Officer, stated, "Timberland delivered record revenue and profit results in the first quarter, driven by strong performance across global markets and continued benefits from our focus on supply chain execution. In the United States, our focus on driving footwear innovation across our portfolio, combined with strong performance in Timberland"s consumer direct business, enabled us to deliver solid revenue gains in a competitive retail marketplace. Timberland"s international business also posted strong results, reflecting double-digit constant dollar sales gains in Europe, Asia and Canada as we continue to benefit from efforts to enhance our premium integrated brand positioning in those regions."

"Overall, we are pleased to have delivered strong financial results in the first quarter. We believe that we are on track for solid performance in 2004 and are targeting mid to high single-digit revenue growth for the balance of this year. We remain committed to delivering solid revenue growth, double-digit profit gains and strong cash flow in 2004 and beyond and believe that the strategies we are pursuing will enable us to continue to deliver strong financial performance while capturing the great potential that we see for the Timberland® brand."

Note that comments made by Mr. Swartz are Timberland"s performance targets, based on current expectations. These comments are forward-looking, and actual results may differ materially.

As previously announced, Timberland will be hosting a conference call to discuss first quarter results today at 8:25 AM Eastern Time. Interested parties may listen to this call through the investor relations section of the Company"s website, www.timberland.com, or by calling (617) 801-9714 and providing access code number 99123436. Replays of this conference call will be available through the investor relations section of the Company"s website.

Timberland (NYSE: TBL - News) is a global leader in the design, engineering and marketing of premium-quality footwear, apparel and accessories for consumers who value the outdoors and their time in it. Timberland® products offer quality workmanship and detailing and are built to withstand the elements of nature. The Company"s products can be found in leading department and specialty stores as well as Timberland® retail stores throughout North America, Europe, Asia, Latin America, South Africa and the Middle East. More information about Timberland is available in the Company"s reports filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).


The Timberland Company
Susan Ostrow, 603-773-1212

Source: The Timberland Company
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