Slipsager continued, “Operating profit for the fiscal 2012 fourth quarter was $36.7 million, a $3.3 million or 9.9% increase from $33.4 million in the same period last year. The increase in operating profit is primarily due to new business in the Janitorial and Facility Solutions segments. For the quarter, Facility Solutions achieved a 13.2% increase in operating profit compared to fiscal 2011. Cash flow from operations continued to be strong with ABM generating $66.8 million for the fourth quarter and $150.6 million for the fiscal year. This marks the third consecutive year the company generated cash flow from operations of $150 million or more. A significant achievement, especially when you consider cash flow from operations was $68 million in fiscal 2008.”
James Lusk, executive vice president and chief financial officer, added, "The Company’s strong cash flow generation for the fiscal year enabled us to reduce debt levels by $85 million since the end of fiscal 2011 and to continue to return value to shareholders through the payment of a quarterly cash dividend. After fiscal year-end, we closed three strategic acquisitions for an aggregate purchase price of approximately $199 million. These transactions were funded by borrowings under our $650 million credit facility and excluding transaction and integration costs, are expected to be slightly accretive for fiscal 2013.”
Interest expense for the fiscal 2012 fourth quarter was $2.3 million, a $1.0 million decrease from $3.3 million in the fourth quarter of 2011 due to lower average borrowings and lower average interest rates on the Company’s credit facility.
The effective tax rate for the fourth quarter of fiscal year 2012 was 21.8%, compared to 41.8% in the same period last year. As previously communicated, the tax provision for the fourth quarter of fiscal 2012 included a one-time discrete tax benefit.Slipsager observed, “Fiscal 2012 results were adversely impacted by the early withdrawal of troops from Iraq and one additional workday, which negatively impacts the Janitorial segment because of fixed price contracts, compared to fiscal 2011. Despite this, we ended the fiscal year with improved operational results and sales as we continued to focus on managing operating margins and building on investments we made in a number of key initiatives to drive long-term growth.”