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Roper Industries' CEO Discusses Q4 2011 - Earnings Call Transcript

Now if you’ll please turn to Slide 3, I’ll turn the call over to Brian Jellison, Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer. After his prepared remarks, we will take questions from our telephone participants. Brian?

Brian Jellison

Thanks, John. Good morning everybody. So we’ll walk you through briefly how the fourth quarter looked, what our full-year enterprise results for 2011 were, and what some of those implications are for positioning ourselves in 2012. We’ll go through the segment detail in terms of how we see 2012 by segment, talk about our guidance for the coming year, and then open it up for Q&A.

So next slide here would be an overview of the fourth quarter. It was an all-time record quarter for us for any quarter in the history of the Company, and we had the most revenue, most net earnings, EBITDA, EBITDA margin, operating and free cash flow. Total sales were up 9%, organic sales were up 7 – frankly, better organic sales growth than we would have expected back six or seven months ago, so things still look pretty favorable in that arena. Gross margins were up to 54.9%, demonstrating that we’re certainly not under a lot of price pressure in the marketplace and that everything we’re doing continues to work exceptionally well.

EBITDA was 222 million in the quarter, which is beyond a spectacular number in our opinion. EBITDA margins were 30.1% and certainly a milestone for Roper and speaks to the quality of the businesses that we have.

Our earnings in the quarter were $1.23 - we talk about that in the income statement here - up from $1.10. Last year fourth quarter, operating cash flow was another sort of spectacular $193 million in the quarter. That represented 158% of net earnings on a conversion basis and represented 26% of sales. Free cash flow was 181 million. Same story – 149% of net earnings here for conversion, so it was quite a strong finish in the fourth quarter to what was an historic year for us.

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