General and administrative expenses for the 2010 fourth quarter as a percentage of net sales were 10.2 percent compared with 9.4 percent in the corresponding quarter last year. Stock-based compensation (a non-cash item) was $4.0 million in the fourth quarter of 2010, compared with $4.3 million for the fourth quarter of 2009. Operating expenses for the 2010 fourth quarter increased to $84.6 million from $69.4 million in the same quarter last year.
Operating income for the 2010 fourth quarter decreased 7.0 percent to $79.8 million from $85.8 million in the comparable 2009 quarter.
The effective tax rate for the 2010 fourth quarter was 38.7 percent compared with 38.3 percent in the same quarter last year.
Net income for the 2010 fourth quarter decreased 7.9 percent to $49.1 million from $53.4 million in the same quarter last year. Net income per diluted share decreased 7.8 percent to $0.53 from $0.57 per diluted share in the 2009 comparable quarter.
Net sales for the Company's DSD segment increased 10.4 percent to $297.5 million for the 2010 fourth quarter from $269.3 million for the same period in 2009. Net sales for the Company's warehouse segment were $21.2 million for the three-months ended December 31, 2010, compared with $21.6 million for the same period in 2009.
Gross sales to customers outside the United States rose to $66.4 million in the 2010 fourth quarter, compared with $43.3 million in the corresponding quarter in 2009.
Rodney C. Sacks, chairman and chief executive officer, attributed the record revenues to continuing strong demand for Monster Energy® drinks as well as to continued strength of the energy category. Monster Energy® drinks continued to gain market share in the US, with sales increasing in excess of category growth. Sacks said that good progress was made on the international front during the quarter, with sales of Monster Energy® drinks increasing well over comparable sales in the same quarter last year. "During the fourth quarter, we continued to invest in our Monster Energy® brand, both domestically and overseas," Sacks said. "In the US, we also launched Monster Energy® M3 Super Concentrate, which is packaged in 5-oz glass bottles and Worx Energy™ energy shots, which is packaged in 2-oz PET plastic bottles. The launch of Worx Energy™ energy shots is being supported with traditional television advertising," Sacks said. "Plans are proceeding for the launch of our new non carbonated Monster Rehab™ energy drink with electrolytes and additional supplements in March 2011," Sacks added.