07.02.13

Exide Technologies: Fiscal 2013 Q3 Results

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Milton, Ga. - Exide Technologies (XIDE) (www.exide.com), a global leader in stored electrical energy solutions, announced its fiscal 2013 third quarter and year to date financial results for the periods ended December 31, 2012.

Consolidated Results

Fiscal 2013 third quarter consolidated net sales were $804.9 million as compared to net sales of $784.1 million in the fiscal 2012 third quarter. Net sales in the fiscal 2013 period were negatively impacted by foreign currency translation of $10.2 million and lead related pricing of $16.3 million. Excluding the negative impact of foreign currency translation and lead-related pricing, net sales increased 6% primarily due to increased sales in the motive power and network power channels of both Industrial Energy segments as well as higher unit sales in the aftermarket channel in Transportation Europe.

Gross profit for the third quarter of $120.1 million, declined by $6.4 million when compared with the prior year period. Continued higher spent battery acquisition costs in the Americas combined with lower margins from third party lead sales negatively impacted gross margin by approximately $11 million. Improvement in spent battery acquisition costs in the U.S. began in November 2012. This trend has continued into the early part of the fiscal fourth quarter which should benefit both Americas businesses if the trend continues.

Fiscal 2013 third quarter operating income, excluding $15.8 million for restructuring and impairment charges, was $20.5 million compared to $30.3 million, excluding $2.1 million for restructuring and impairment charges, in the prior year third quarter. The decrease is primarily due to lower gross profits discussed above. Current period restructuring charges were $5.2 million related to the closure of the Bristol, Tennessee flooded battery manufacturing facility, the idling of lead recycling operations in Reading, Pennsylvania and the closure of GNB India. Impairment charges of $10.6 million are principally related to asset write-downs for the closure of GNB India and the sale of the Australasia transportation business that was completed on February 4, 2013.

Net loss for the fiscal 2013 third quarter was $15.4 million or $0.20 per share as compared to the prior year period net income of $68.2 million or $0.84 per share. Fiscal 2012 third quarter net income included the non-cash reversal of the tax valuation allowance in France for $76.7 million partially offset by a $13.4 million charge to settle a tax audit in Spain.

Fiscal 2013 Nine Month Consolidated Results

Net sales for the first nine months of fiscal 2013 were $2.2 billion as compared with $2.3 billion for the prior fiscal year period. Net sales in the fiscal 2013 period were negatively impacted by lead related price decreases of $65.0 million and unfavorable foreign currency translation of approximately $97.7 million.

Fiscal 2013 operating income, excluding $16.4 million for restructuring and impairment charges, was $29.0 million versus $66.7 million, excluding $3.7 million for restructuring and impairment charges, for the fiscal 2012 period. The decline is primarily the impact of higher spent battery costs coupled with lower LME based escalator pricing. Higher spent battery acquisition costs combined with lower third party lead margins in the Americas impacted results by approximately $44 million.

The Company reported a net loss for the nine months ended December 31, 2012 of $135.8 million or $1.76 per share as compared to net income of $59.4 million or $0.72 per share in the nine months ended December 31, 2011. The fiscal 2013 net loss includes a non-cash tax valuation allowance charge in the U.S. of $86.7 million or $1.12 per share. The fiscal 2012 net income and per share amount were positively impacted by the non-cash reversal of the tax valuation allowance in France partially offset by a charge to settle a tax audit in Spain, aggregating $63.3 million or $0.82 per share.

As of December 31, 2012, the Company had cash and cash equivalents of $80.0 million and $81.7 million of availability under its revolving bank credit facility. This compares to cash and cash equivalents of $155.4 million and $152.8 million of availability under the revolving bank credit facility at March 31, 2012. The Company reported a free cash flow usage of $109 million for the nine months ended December 31, 2012 as compared to a usage of $73 million for the comparable prior year period. The Company currently expects to generate free cash flow in the range of $30 million in the fourth quarter, less than previously stated. Jim Bolch, President and Chief Executive Officer, said, "Lower operating income as well as the higher cost of spent batteries in the first nine months of fiscal 2013, when compared to the prior year period, was the main driver for the increase use of cash."

Segment Information for the Three and Nine Months Ended December 31, 2012

Transportation Segments

Net sales of the Company's combined Transportation segments in the fiscal 2013 third quarter was $513.8 million as compared to $503.6 million in the same period of fiscal 2012. Net sales were unfavorably impacted by foreign currency translation in the amount of $5.6 million. Price decreases resulting from lead escalator agreements negatively impacted total Transportation net sales by approximately $8.8 million in the fiscal 2013 third quarter. Fiscal 2013 third quarter aftermarket unit volume increased approximately 11% as compared to the prior year third quarter, while units sold to original equipment ("OE") customers decreased less than 1% quarter-over-quarter.

Fiscal 2013 third quarter operating income, excluding restructuring and impairment charges, was $11.5 million as compared to operating income of $22.5 million, excluding restructuring and impairment charges, in the prior year third quarter. The decline in the current quarter compared to the prior year period is primarily the result of continued high spent battery costs in the Americas. Transportation Europe & ROW ("ROW") was impacted by the inability to obtain pricing to offset higher product costs and a mix shift to lower margin products.

Net sales for the first nine months of fiscal 2013 were $1.35 billion as compared to $1.42 billion for the same period of fiscal 2012 primarily due to price decreases as a result of lower average lead prices and unfavorable currency translation, partially offset by higher unit volumes.

Operating income, excluding restructuring and impairment charges, was $5.5 million for the nine months ended December 31, 2012 compared to operating income of $37.6 million, excluding restructuring and impairment charges, in the same period of the prior year. Transportation Americas operating loss, excluding restructuring and impairment charges, for the current year period was $12.1 million, which was negatively impacted by lower fixed cost absorption and higher commodity costs. Transportation Europe & ROW operating income, excluding restructuring and impairment charges, for the first nine months of fiscal 2013 was $17.6 million and was impacted by competitive pricing in the aftermarket channel and increased shift to lower margin products.

For the first nine months of fiscal 2013, Transportation Americas produced approximately 246 thousand tons of lead in our North American recycling operation, down about 4% from the prior year period. The Company sold 10% of this lead production in the open market and 12% under tolling arrangements during the first nine months of fiscal 2013. This compares to 11% and 16% in the open market and under tolling arrangements, respectively, in the prior year comparable period. Third-party lead sales for the first nine months of fiscal 2013 were down approximately $25.3 million or about 24% as compared to the prior year period. The Company continues its strategy to exit the business of third-party lead sales with the now closed Frisco, Texas recycling facility and the scheduled idling of lead recycling operations at the Reading, Pennsylvania facility in March 2013.

Industrial Energy Segments

Fiscal 2013 third quarter total net sales for the Company's combined Industrial Energy segments increased to $291.0 million as compared to $280.5 million in the comparable fiscal 2012 period. Net sales were unfavorably impacted by foreign currency translation of $4.6 million. Price decreases resulting from lead escalator agreements negatively impacted net sales by $7.6 million in the fiscal 2013 third quarter as compared to the net sales reported in the same period of fiscal 2012.

Fiscal 2013 third quarter operating income, excluding restructuring and impairment charges, was $16.7 million compared to $17.4 million, excluding restructuring and impairment charges, in the prior year period. Higher cost of spent batteries combined with lower LME lead pricing weighed on the Americas results which was partially offset by higher unit sales in both motive and network power and improved pricing to recover lead costs in Industrial Energy Europe & ROW.

Net sales for the first nine months of fiscal 2013 were $862.7 million as compared to $881.8 million for the same period of fiscal 2012. The decrease was due to price decreases related to lower average lead prices, and unfavorable foreign currency translation.

Operating income, excluding restructuring and impairment charges, was $45.0 million for the nine months ended December 31, 2012 compared to $51.9 million, excluding restructuring and impairment charges, in the same period of the prior year. Industrial Energy Americas operating income, excluding restructuring and impairment charges, was $21.2 million as compared to $32.5 million, excluding restructuring and impairment charges, in the prior year period. The decrease in operating income for the Americas is primarily due to compressed margins as a result of higher lead input costs and lower LME lead pricing, as well as start-up related costs in the Company's Columbus, Georgia facility. The impact of higher spent battery acquisition costs was approximately $14.1 million. Industrial Energy Europe & ROW operating income, excluding restructuring and impairment charges, improved approximately 23% to $23.8 million in the fiscal 2013 period as compared to the prior year period. The increase is due to higher unit sales in both motive and network power, lower selling and administrative expenses, partially offset by higher commodity costs.

Non-GAAP Financial Measure

The Company defines Free Cash Flow as cash from operating activities less cash from investing activities, both as measured in accordance with U.S. Generally Accepted Accounting Principles. We believe that Free Cash Flow provides useful information about the cash generated by our core operations after capital expenditures and the sale of non-core assets.

The foregoing non-GAAP financial measure should be used in addition to, but not in isolation or as a substitute for, the analysis provided in the Company's measures of financial performance prepared in conformity with U.S. GAAP. The non-GAAP financial measure should be read only in conjunction with the Company's condensed consolidated financial statements prepared in accordance with GAAP.

Conference Call

The Company previously announced that it will hold a conference call to discuss its results on Thursday, February 7, 2013 at 9:00 a.m. Eastern Time.

Conference call details:
Dial-in number for US/Canada: 800-706-9117
Dial-in number for international callers: 706-679-5918
Conference ID: 86782101

A telephonic replay of the conference call is available:
Dates: from 12:00 p.m. ET February 7, 2013 to 11:59 p.m. ET February 21, 2013
Domestic dial-in: 855-859-2056 or 800-585-8367
International dial-in: 404-537-3406
Passcode: 86782101

About Exide Technologies

Exide Technologies, with operations in more than 80 countries, is one of the world's largest producers and recyclers of lead-acid batteries. The Company's four global business groups -- Transportation Americas, Transportation Europe and Rest of World, Industrial Energy Americas and Industrial Energy Europe and Rest of World -- provide a comprehensive range of stored electrical energy products and services for industrial and transportation applications.

Transportation markets include original-equipment and aftermarket automotive, heavy-duty truck, agricultural and marine applications, and new technologies for hybrid vehicles and automotive applications. Industrial markets include network power applications such as telecommunications systems, electric utilities, railroads, photovoltaic (solar-power related) and uninterruptible power supply (UPS), and motive-power applications including lift trucks, mining and other commercial vehicles.

Further information about Exide, including its financial results, are available at www.exide.com.

INVESTOR CONTACT:
Carol Knies
Senior Director, Investor Relations
Exide Technologies
678/566-9316 phone
carol.knies@exide.com       
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