SIOUX FALLS, S.D., May 20, 2013 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Raven Industries, Inc. (Nasdaq:RAVN) today reported sales and earnings for its fiscal 2014 first quarter ended April 30, 2013. Raven's first-quarter net income was $14.0 million, or $0.38 per diluted share, versus year-earlier net income of $19.0 million, or $0.52 per diluted share. Each of the company's three divisions posted sales declines compared with a year ago, reflecting the current sluggish growth environment and tough year-over-year comparisons versus last year's record first quarter. Of note, Aerostar grew operating income during the quarter due to gross margin improvements and the integration of Vista Research. All earnings-per-share amounts reflect a two-for-one stock split effective July 25, 2012. For the first quarter, sales were $103.7 million, versus $117.9 million in the prior-year first quarter. Modest softness in the company's Applied Technology Division, declining demand from U.S. agency customers in Aerostar and a moderated energy market in Engineered Films, resulted in the overall quarterly sales decline of 12.1 percent. "As we anticipated, Raven met economic headwinds and faced near-term challenges in the fiscal first quarter," said Daniel A. Rykhus, Raven's president and chief executive officer. "The macro situations in each division vary. We are closely monitoring all indicators while factoring in longer-term potential for growth, and carefully executing our business model within this dynamic environment. "Importantly, we're aggressively working to leverage our targeted investments in new product development, capacity expansion and new market penetration. And looking ahead to the rest of fiscal 2014, the quality of our business development pipeline remains encouraging. Specifically, we see opportunities in new products that use our multi-layer film capabilities, and lighter-than-air and radar system sales outside of U.S. government channels. Additionally, we have several new precision ag products that will launch in our second half and are expected to help drive growth in Applied Technology."