BlueLinx's CEO Discusses Q1 2012 Results - Earnings Call Transcript

BlueLinx Holdings Inc. (BXC)

Q1 2012 Earnings Call

May 03, 2012 10:00 am ET

Executives

Maryon Davis - Director Finance & IR

Doug Goforth - SVP, CFO & Treasurer

George Judd - CEO & President

Analysts

Alan Weber Robotti & Company

Presentation

Operator

Good morning. My name is Rachel and I’ll be your conference operator today. At this time, I would like to welcome everyone to the BlueLinx’s first quarter earnings release conference call. All lines have been placed on mute to prevent any background noise. After the speakers’ remarks, there will be a question-and-answer period. (Operator Instructions) As a reminder, ladies and gentlemen, this conference is being recorded, today, Thursday May 3, 2012. Thank you.

I would now like to introduce Maryon Davis. You may begin your conference.

Maryon Davis

Thank you, Rachel and welcome everyone to the BlueLinx’s first quarter 2012 conference call. Our speakers this morning are George Judd, Chief Executive Officer and Doug Goforth, Chief Financial Officer. Doug will start today's presentation with a review of the quarterly results. Then George will provide an operations review of the quarter and add a final perspective before opening the call to your questions. Our press release was issued earlier this morning. A copy of the release is available in the Investor Relations section of the company’s website at bluelinxco.com.

Before starting the call, I need to refer you to our Safe Harbor statement. I would like to remind everyone that on today’s call, management may make forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, including all statements concerning future or unexpected events or results. Actual results could differ materially from those projected in the company’s forward-looking statements due to known and unknown risks and uncertainties.

A discussion of factors that may affect future results is provided in the company’s filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. BlueLinx undertakes no obligation to publicly update or revise any forward-looking statements contained in these presentations based on new information or otherwise, except as required by law. With that requirement completed, I’d like to remind our listeners that we have posted slides on our website. We will be referring to these slides during this call and we encourage you to view them during our remarks. Additionally, the slide package contains an appendix of supplementary tables available for your review.

Now, let me turn the call over to our Chief Financial Officer, Doug Goforth.

Doug Goforth

Thanks, Maryon. Good morning everyone and thank you for joining us today. This morning we reported a GAAP net loss of $11 million or $0.18 per diluted share on revenue of $453.7 million. That compares to GAAP net loss of $12.3 million or $0.40 per diluted share on revenue of $390.6 million in the first quarter of last year.

As a reminder, we successfully completed a $60 million rights offerings which resulted in the issuance of approximately 28.6 million additional shares in the third quarter of 2011. Total diluted weighted average number of common shares outstanding at the end of the first quarter of 2012 was $60 million compare to $30.8 million diluted weighted average common shares in the year-ago period.

During the quarter we used approximately $89 million in cash for operations as first quarter working capital requirement increased $77 million consistent with our cyclical business and the improving sales environment. We had approximately $122 million in excess availability at the end of the quarter with a cash balance of $5.9 million. Our net debt was approximately $401 million, up approximately $18 million from a year ago. Now for a closer look at the quarterly financial results. For those of you following along the slides posted on the Investor Relation section to the BlueLinx website, I will begin with slide 5.

Overall sales for the first quarter ended March 31 totaled $453.7 million up 16.2% or $63.1 million from the first quarter of 2011. Specialty sales remained strong accounting for just under 60% of total revenue. The increase in total revenue is attributable to increased unit volumes and increased underlying product prices for both product categories. Overall unit volume rose 11.2% compared to the same period a year ago and specialty unit volume increased 12.4% and structural unit volume increased 9.4% during the quarter.

Moving to slide 6, BlueLinx generated approximately $54 million in gross profit for the quarter up 17.2% from approximately $46 million in the year-ago period. Overall gross margins was 12% for the quarter, up from last year’s 11.8% due to the continued focus on margin expansions, rising product prices for many other products we distribute including key grades of wood based products, roofing insulation and other specialty products and growth in our other warehouse business.

Total operating expenses increased to $58.3 million from $51.4 million a year ago and included $0.6 million and $7.2 million in real estate gains respectively. Excluding real estate gains, operating expenses were consistent with the same period a year ago even though sales through the warehouse channel accounted for 100% of the overall revenue increase.

Keeping our expenses flat in the quarter reflects our ongoing focus on managing expenses as evidenced by our ability to offset a $1.1 million increase in our logistics cost including (inaudible) field. The company reported an operating loss for the first quarter of 4.1 million compared to an operating loss of $5.1 million in the prior year period reflecting an 8 million increase in gross profit and a 7 million increase in operating expense.

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