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Matthews International Reports Earnings For Fiscal 2013 Second Quarter

Net income attributable to the Company was $26.5 million, or $0.93 per share, for the first six months last fiscal year. On a non-GAAP adjusted basis, year-to-date earnings were $1.08 per share a year ago.

For the Memorialization group, the Funeral Home Products segment reported higher sales for the fiscal 2013 second quarter, compared to a year ago, as a result of an increase in unit volume of caskets. Sales for the Cemetery Products segment improved for the current quarter, primarily reflecting the acquisition of Everlasting Granite (acquired in May 2012). The Cremation segment also reported an increase in sales for the current quarter primarily reflecting higher equipment sales.

For the Brand Solutions group, the Graphics Imaging segment reported higher sales for the fiscal 2013 second quarter, compared to the same quarter a year ago, resulting mainly from the acquisition of The Wetzel Group in November 2012. Fiscal 2013 second quarter sales for Merchandising Solutions segment increased over last year on higher sales volume. Sales for the Marking and Fulfillment Systems segment were also higher than a year ago mainly attributable to the acquisition of Pyramid Controls (December 2012).

In discussing the Company's results for the quarter, Joseph C. Bartolacci, President and Chief Executive Officer, stated:

"Our consolidated results for the current quarter are very encouraging. The key demographics for Memorialization favorably affected the results of this Group, particularly our Funeral Home Products segment as U.S. death rates returned to more normal trends. In addition, our recent acquisitions have performed well and contributed to our second quarter operating results. While operating results in several of our Brand Solutions businesses continued to be challenged by soft economic conditions, particularly in Europe, we recently have started to see evidence of some firming in many of these markets.

"Our strategic initiatives are progressing well. We have a strategic sourcing project underway that should begin to generate cost savings by the end of this fiscal year. In addition, we are currently initiating lean projects in several of our businesses, from which we are expecting to see the benefits next fiscal year. Also, the recent ERP implementation issues within our Cemetery Products business are substantially behind us; however, we still have some work ahead of us to maximize the benefits of this system, including the launch of a new e‑services capability for our customers.

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