A smaller MarineMax delivers improved results

CLEARWATER, Fla. – Boat retail chain MarineMax, Inc. (NYSE: HZO) generated revenue of $100.4 million for its first quarter ended Dec. 31, compared with $100.2 million for the comparable quarter last year, it reported in a recent statement.

Same-store sales increased approximately 13 percent compared with a 52-percent decline in the comparable quarter last year. Revenue from stores recently closed that were not eligible for inclusion in the same-store sales base was $11.1 million.

Net income for the first quarter of fiscal 2010 was $10.2 million, or $0.45 per diluted share, compared with a net loss of $14.3 million, or $0.78 per share, for the comparable quarter last year. But included in net income for the first quarter of fiscal 2010 was a tax benefit of approximately $19.3 million, or $0.86 per diluted share. Without the tax benefit, the company would have incurred a net loss of $9.1 million, or $0.42 per share.

As of Dec. 31, inventory was $190.2 million compared with $440.9 million on the same day in 2008, a $250.0 million or 57-percent decline. In addition, short-term borrowings declined 69 percent, or $227.0 million, to $102.0 million compared with $329.0 million as of Dec. 31, 2008, according to the boat retailer.

A smaller footprint

The company pointed out in its report that it was able to produce “consistent levels of revenue and an increase in same-store sales despite operating with 20 fewer stores compared with the prior year quarter and facing the continued challenging economic environment.” MarineMax closed 26 stores in fiscal 2009 as a key component in its efforts to better match its fixed costs with the decline in business it has experienced because of the weak economic conditions.

“The actions we took during fiscal 2009 to reduce inventory, reduce our workforce, streamline expenses, and optimize our store count allowed us to report significantly improved results for the first quarter compared with the year ago quarter,” said William H. McGill, Jr., chairman, president and CEO. “It is encouraging that we were able to produce a double digit increase in same-store-sales with gross margins above the levels we experienced in most of fiscal 2009. We believe our December quarter same-store sales growth once again outpaced our industry, yielding market share gains.”

Though McGill went on to say his team is encouraged by “hints of stabilization in the industry,” he said they expect market conditions to continue to be tough, so the company’s focus on controlling expenses and inventory will also continue.

“We are convinced that, as the economy gradually recovers, those that have delayed buying their first or next boat will return,” he added. “MarineMax has positioned itself well to capture these buyers and fulfill their passion for boating as part of the MarineMax family. The actions we have taken to streamline our business have strengthened our balance sheet significantly and will position us to take advantage of opportunities for growth.”

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