Leading Brands, Inc. Announces Record Results For Fiscal 2001 Net Income Increased 15% Over The Prior Year
VANCOUVER, CANADA - June 3, 2002 - LEADING BRANDS, INC. (NASDAQ: LBIX, TSX: LBI), Canada's largest independent, fully integrated brand management company, is pleased to announce record profits for its 2001 fiscal year ended February 28, 2002.
Net income for the period was $2,093,000Cdn ($1,339,000US) or $0.15Cdn ($0.10US) per share versus $1,818,000Cdn ($1,215,000US) or $0.13Cdn ($0.09US) per share for the year ending February 28, 2001. Revenue for fiscal 2001 was $64,371,000Cdn ($41,182,000US) versus $76,416,000Cdn ($51,087,000US) in the prior year.
Revenues for the fourth quarter were $13,003,000Cdn ($8,176,000US) versus $14,069,000Cdn ($9,124,000US) in the same quarter last year. The company recorded a net loss of $76,000Cdn for the fourth quarter. When combined with an $86,000Cdn profit in the third quarter, this marks the first time that the Company has been profitable through its two seasonally slow quarters; a tribute to its margin and cost controls.
The year and quarter revenue reduction is attributable to the Company's transition of its SoBe“ beverage business from distribution to co-pack and the consequentially lower revenue per case. Although revenue dropped, profitability increased and all other aspects of the Company's business indeed grew.
EBITDA before other items for fiscal 2001 was $4,740,000Cdn ($3,033,000US) versus $900,000Cdn ($601,000US) during the prior year, a remarkable 426% increase.
Leading Brands Chairman & CEO Ralph D. McRae said: "We are thrilled with these results. Increased cash flow from our core operations and SoBe“ sale allowed us to pay down more than $7,000,000 Cdn in debt this past year and provide the engine to drive our international expansion. Breakeven results in our traditionally slower third and fourth quarters were only a dream a few years ago and our hard work on reducing fixed costs and maintaining margins has paid off."
Mr. McRae continued, "We are now looking forward to the exciting launch of our new TREKô Optimized Performance Beverage‘ in early Q2 and our PEZ“ 100% Juice line following later this Summer. We have received a tremendous response from our distributors and are looking forward to another great year."
Mr. McRae concluded, "I want to thank all of our employees and stakeholders for their contributions in taking us from a regional Canadian bottler and distributor just three short years ago to an international, integrated brand company today. They should be very proud of their efforts."
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About Leading Brands, Inc.
Leading Brands, Inc. (NASDAQ:LBIX) is North America’s only fully integrated premium beverage company. The Company’s unique Integrated Distribution System (IDS) ™ offers turnkey, one-stop shopping to food and beverage brand owners, including manufacturing, distribution, sales/marketing and licensing. In addition, Leading Brands produces their own line of beverages such as TrueBlue®, LiteBlue®, TREK® Natural Sports Drinks, NITRO® Energy Drinks, INFINITY® Health Water™, Country Harvest® Juices, and Caesar’s® Cocktails.
Forward Looking Statements
Certain information contained in this press release includes forward-looking statements. Words such as “believe”, “expect,” “will,” or comparable terms, are intended to identify forward-looking statements concerning the Company’s expectations, beliefs, intentions, plans, objectives, future events or performance and other developments. All forward-looking statements included in this press release are based on information available to the Company on the date hereof. Such statements speak only as of the date hereof. Important factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from the Company’s estimations and projections are disclosed in the Company’s securities filings and include, but are not limited to, the following: general economic conditions, weather conditions, changing beverage consumption trends, pricing, availability of raw materials, economic uncertainties (including currency exchange rates), government regulation, managing and maintaining growth, the effect of adverse publicity, litigation, competition and other risk factors described from time to time in securities reports filed by Leading Brands, Inc.