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Blount International CEO Discusses Q3 2010 Results – Earnings Call Transcript

The SpeeCo acquisition is a tight strategic fit and will leverage our worldwide distribution system. Requiring SpeeCo positions us in the adjacent farm and ranch sector with a primary product that is forest related in the SpeeCo log splitter line. We see opportunity in our combined operations to expand the global and channel reach of parts that we sell as well as to improve our sourcing of low cost parts.

SpeeCo is highly cash flow generative with limited capital requirements. We are well on the way to integrating the SpeeCo team into Blount and we expect to gain (synergies) beginning in 2011.

The Gear divestiture was something we considered for some time. Gear products represented a non-core asset that would require significant investment on Blount’s part to grow into a market leader. We received good value for Gear and the buyer received a solid and profitable business that it will be able to expand. Cash from that divestiture was used to repay our outstanding revolver balance on October 1 st and provides us with additional liquidity to further pursue our strategy.

In addition to the three items I just discussed, we made progress in the quarter on other initiatives as well. The introduction of PowerSharp is on track. In the quarter we sold $2.5 million dollars in the PowerSharp product line, bringing sales since introduction earlier this year, to $2.8 million. We now have good distribution and are focusing our efforts on pull-through with store demonstrations and print advertising to key trade partners. Last week we demonstrated PowerSharp at the GIE tradeshow in Louisville, Kentucky. The reception and interest were excellent.

On the efficiency front we continue to make organizational structure changes as well as pursue our continuous improvement programs. To date we’ve held 12 (kyzan) events and anticipate holding approximately three more in the next six months with approximately 70 scheduled for 2011. Results have been good so far and we expect to see the efficiency improvements reflected during 2011.

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