Thomas Industries Reports Year-End Sales and Earnings

09.02.2005

Thomas Industries Inc. today reported record earnings for the year ended December 31, 2004, on net sales that were a record for its pump and compressor business.

Net sales for the year increased nine percent to $410,114,000, as compared to $376,774,000 a year ago. Net income for the year was $114,154,000, or $6.44 per share, compared to $37,314,000, or $2.12 per share for the comparable period a year ago. Net income for 2004 includes an after-tax gain on the sale of Thomas Industries' equity interest of its lighting joint venture, The Genlyte Thomas Group (GTG), of $4.74 per share. The year also reflects equity earnings from GTG from January 1 to July 31.

Net sales for the quarter increased one percent, to $100,243,000 from $99,633,000 in 2003. Net income declined in the fourth quarter, reflecting the lack of equity earnings from GTG that was sold in July 2004. Net income for the quarter was $3,431,000, or $.19 per share, versus $8,493,000, or $.48 per share a year ago.

Sales were positively impacted in the fourth quarter and year by foreign exchange rate differences from the previous year's period by approximately $4,800,000 and $22,000,000 respectively.

In 2004, operating income for the pump and compressor business increased five percent for the quarter and eleven percent for the year. Corporate expenses were $3,148,000 and $11,204,000 for the fourth quarter and full-year, respectively. Pre-tax income for 2004 includes non-recurring charges for the quarter and full-year of $356,000 and $2,836,000, respectively, for the shutdown of a production facility in Wuppertal, Germany. The Company also incurred non-recurring legal expenses for patent litigation, a review of strategic alternatives, and a legal restructuring of the Company's European entities of $1,089,000 for the quarter and $1,309,000 for the year. Additionally, environmental charges of $200,000 for the quarter and $1,100,000 for the year were incurred relating to a former lighting facility sold in 1985.

Costs to comply with the requirements of Sarbanes-Oxley were $327,000 and $1,500,000 for the quarter and year, respectively. These costs will continue in 2005. The evaluation and audit of Thomas Industries' internal control systems has not been completed.

In commenting on the fourth quarter and year-end results, Timothy C. Brown, Chairman, President and CEO stated, "Operating income for the fourth quarter and year were records for the pump and compressor business. In the fourth quarter, our Asia Pacific Group posted a seven percent increase in sales, followed by a three percent increase for our European Group. The North American Group posted a four percent decline in sales for the quarter, due in large part to lower sales in the automotive air suspension market and the anticipated decline in compressors for oxygen concentrators. This was offset by strong sales in certain other medical markets including nebulizers, aspirators and central vacuum systems for hospitals."

In commenting on the outlook for the year 2005, Brown said, "We continue to face very competitive pricing pressures within some of our key markets and are responding with improved efficiencies and reduced costs. In the second quarter of 2005 we will begin production in our new manufacturing facility in Wuxi, China. We are working to integrate the recent acquisition of the Ruey Chaang side channel blower business and are finalizing plans to increase capacity and improve efficiencies at our largest manufacturing facility in Schopfheim, Germany. Overall, we remain optimistic about the year ahead."

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