Pentair’s Third Quarter 2003 EPS Totals $0.77


Oct 16, 2003. Pentair reported earnings per share (EPS) of $0.77 for the third quarter 2003, noting that third quarter margins in the Company's Water Technologies Group improved to the same level as in last year's third quarter, and that the Enclosures Group recorded its seventh consecutive quarter of sequential margin improvement.

Pentair's three operating groups, all of which realized sales gains in the third quarter over year-ago levels, contributed positively to Free Cash Flow (Cash from Operations less Capital Expenditures) of $89.9 million during the third quarter, resulting in year-to-date Free Cash Flow of $148.6 million, or 135 percent of net income.

Pentair's third quarter net sales totaled $685.0 million, up nine percent from sales of $629.3 million in the same period a year ago, while operating income totaled $67.7 million, ten percent greater than the $61.8 million reported in the third quarter of 2002. Third quarter 2003 EPS of $0.77 reflects a three percent increase over EPS of $0.75 in the same period last year. The third quarter marked Pentair's sixth consecutive quarter of favorable quarter-over-quarter EPS comparisons.

Randall J. Hogan, Pentair chairman and CEO, said: "We've seen continued progress on margins and some encouraging sales trends in both our Water Technologies and Enclosures Groups. Our Tools business also realized a slight improvement in sales, but severe price competition in the marketplace continues to affect the Tools margins.

Overall, our businesses are performing well in markets that appear to be stable, if not improving."

In the Water Technologies Group, third quarter 2003 sales of $270.9 million increased 21 percent versus the same period last year, driven by acquisitions, pool equipment, residential and commercial pumps and the European water business. Operating income of $36.2 million gained 21 percent over the same period last year, with pump margins increasing due to productivity improvements and material savings.

The European water business also contributed stronger profits resulting from increased volume and the effects of currency translation. Margins in the Group were 13.4 percent, matching those of the same period last year. Pentair noted that, on a year-to- date basis, the Water Technologies Group is its largest business and it has been the largest contributor to the Company's operating income each year since 2000.

In the Tools Group, net sales of $268.0 million in the third quarter of 2003 were up one percent compared to the same period last year. The sales gain was primarily attributed to the Oldham Saw acquisition. Lower volume in higher margin products, competitive pricing, some inflationary cost increases, and expenses related to capacity reductions continued to affect operating income, which totaled $21.4 million in the third quarter of 2003, 16 percent lower than in the same period last year. Margins of 8.0 percent were 160 basis points below those of the same period last year.

In the Enclosures Group, third quarter 2003 sales of $146.2 million were up almost five percent over the same period in 2002. The improved volume was driven by increased sales in electronics markets combined with share gains in U.S. commercial and networking markets. Third quarter operating income of $13.6 million gained 53 percent over that of the previous year's third quarter, while margins increased 300 basis points to 9.3 percent. Higher profits in the Group were driven primarily by volume-related efficiencies and continued productivity improvements.

"We made solid gains in working capital, supply chain management, our lean enterprise initiative, and organic growth, and we're redoubling efforts to offset competitive market price pressures in the Tools Group through additional materials savings and improved productivity," Hogan said. "Looking forward, we expect fourth quarter 2003 EPS of between $0.62 and $0.70, compared to EPS of $0.56 in the same period last year."

A Pentair conference call scheduled for 11:00 a.m. CDT today will be webcast live via . The conference call, which can be found on the site's "Financial Information" page, will be archived at the same location.

Pentair is a Minnesota-based manufacturer whose core businesses compete in tools, water technologies, and enclosures markets. The company employs 12,000 people in more than 50 locations around the world.

Any statements made about the company's anticipated financial results are forward-looking statements subject to risks and uncertainties such as continued economic growth; foreign currency effects; retail and industrial demand; product introductions; and pricing and other competitive pressures. Forward-looking statements included herein are made as of the date hereof and the company undertakes no obligation to update publicly such statements to reflect subsequent events or circumstances. Actual results could differ materially from anticipated results.

Source: Pentair plc.

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