COLUMBUS, Ohio, Nov. 19, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- The Board of Directors of Lancaster Colony Corporation (Nasdaq: LANC) today voted to raise the regular quarterly cash dividend for the 50 th consecutive year. The company believes it is one of only 16 U.S. companies to have currently reached this 50-year milestone.
The board also approved a special cash dividend of $5.00 per common share. The special dividend and the quarterly dividend of 38 cents per share will be paid December 28, 2012 to shareholders of record on December 10, 2012. As of the record date for today's annual shareholder meeting, there were 27,297,556 common shares outstanding.
Voting at the annual meeting, shareholders reelected three incumbent directors. They are James B. Bachmann, retired managing partner of the Columbus, Ohio office of Ernst & Young LLP; Neeli Bendapudi, dean and professor, School of Business, University of Kansas; and John L. Boylan, chief financial officer, vice president and treasurer of the company.
John B. Gerlach, Jr., chairman and chief executive officer of Lancaster Colony, said the increased regular cash dividend reflects the company's continued strong financial position and will be the 198 th consecutive quarterly cash dividend paid by the company since September 1963. He noted that the indicated annual payout, excluding the special dividend, for the current fiscal year ending June 30, 2013 is $1.50 per share, up from the $1.41 per share paid in fiscal 2012.Mr. Gerlach said, "After careful consideration of the company's capital structure and likely cash needs, the board felt that the payment of a special dividend provides an appropriate return of value to shareholders while the company retains financial resources adequate to support additional Specialty Foods acquisitions and other future growth opportunities."