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Ralph D. McRae,
Chairman and CEO
Leading Brands, Inc.
(604) 214-9722 ext. 238
Chief Financial Officer
Leading Brands, Inc.
(604) 214-9722 Ext.313
Strategic Growth International
Stan Altschuler/David Waldman
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 SoBeÒ 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.
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 SoBeÒ 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 TREK Optimized Performance BeverageÔ in early Q2 and our PEZÒ 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."
CONSOLIDATED STATEMENT OF INCOME and DEFICIT (PDF)
We Build Brands(TM)
About Leading Brands, Inc.
Leading Brands, Inc. (NASDAQ:LBIX) is the largest independent, fully integrated premium beverage company in Canada. 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 TREK®, Johnny's Roadside®Iced Tea and Lemonade, Country Harvest® Juices, Caesar's®Bloody Caesar Cocktail, and Cool Canadian® Water. Leading Brands recently undertook a major expansion into the United States, with its US headquarters located in Stamford, CT. Its subsidiary, Quick, Inc. is building a home replenishment and delivery system for the new economy.
Statements in this news release that are not historical are to be regarded as forward-looking statements which are subject to risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially. Such risks and uncertainties with respect to the Company's business include general economic conditions, weather conditions, changing beverage consumption trends, pricing, and the availability of raw materials and economic uncertainties, including currency.