American Vanguard Corporation (NYSE:AVD), today announced financial results for the first quarter ended March 31, 2012. Fiscal 2012 First Quarter Financial Highlights – versus Fiscal 2011 First Quarter
Net sales of $87.3 million, compared with $66.0 million, an increase of 32%.
Net income of $8.7 million, compared with $5.0 million, an increase of 74%.
Earnings per diluted share were $0.31, compared with $0.18, an increase of 72%.
Eric Wintemute, Chairman and CEO of American Vanguard, stated: “Our first quarter 2012 business performance reflects positive conditions in the U.S. agricultural sector and was driven largely by the growing demand for our portfolio of granular soil insecticides. Gross profit margins rose to 43% as we achieved improved overall factory utilization rates. Operating expenses as a percentage of sales were held to 26%, despite higher regulatory expenses and freight costs that kept pace with our expanding export business. Stronger sales, improved gross margins and operating expense management enabled us to improve our bottom line significantly.” Mr. Wintemute continued, “We are seeing renewed demand for the use of granular soil insecticides in the U.S. corn market, as growers combat strong pest pressure from both primary and secondary insects. The use of our corn soil insecticides in conjunction with genetically modified seeds as part of an integrated pest management program provides the most comprehensive defense against the full range of soil insects and can enhance harvest yields. American Vanguard has the largest offering of corn soil insecticides along with the most advanced, closed delivery equipment for safely and efficiently dispensing these products.” Mr. Wintemute concluded, “Our performance during the quarter serves to validate our long-standing belief that conventional chemistry is an essential part of integrated pest management. We are, of course, pleased with these results and look forward to giving additional color during our earnings call on the period.”