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Herman Miller 4th-Quarter Profit Up 97% Amid Better-Than-Expected Revenue Growth

Thursday 27 June 2013

Herman Miller Inc.'s fiscal fourth-quarter earnings rose 97% as the office-furniture company posted stronger-than-expected revenue growth. However, for the current fiscal quarter, the company forecast per-share earnings of 32 cents to 37 cents, well below recent estimates of analysts polled by Thomson Reuters for 46 cents.
Herman Miller has been focusing on international growth, especially in Asia and Latin America. However, the company has been under pressure in recent quarters from weakness in US Government and health-care markets as well as challenges in key economies abroad.
Chief Financial Officer Greg Bylsma said Herman Miller "ended fiscal 2013 on a strong note, having achieved quarterly sales, earnings and cash flow generation at or near their highest levels in more than four years."
For the quarter ended June 1, Herman Miller reported a profit of $23.4 million, or 40 cents a share, up from $11.9 million, or 20 cents a share, a year earlier. Excluding charges related its legacy pension plan and other items, adjusted earnings were up at 43 cents from 28 cents. Revenue increased 9.3% to $460 million.
The company in March forecast adjusted earnings of 34 cents to 38 cents a share on revenue of $430 million to $450 million. Gross margin fell to 35.4% from 35.7%. At the company's North American business, sales rose 8.9% to $311.5 million. In its much smaller business outside North America, sales increased 2.1% to $99.1 million. New orders were up 4% at $461.6 million from a year earlier. However, order backlog declined 1.3% to $274.4 million. Shares were unchanged at $27.21 in recent after-hours trading. Through the close Wednesday, The stock is up by two-thirds in the past 12 months.

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