Asbury Automotive Group Announces 2011 Fourth Quarter and Year-End Financial Results
Fourth quarter adjusted EPS from continuing operations of $0.54 per diluted share, up 46% over prior period quarter
Full year 2011 adjusted EPS from continuing operations of $1.82 per diluted share, up 29% over prior year
DULUTH, Ga., Feb. 14, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Asbury Automotive Group, Inc. (NYSE: ABG), one of the largest automotive retail and service companies in the U.S., today reported adjusted income from continuing operations for the fourth quarter 2011 of $17.0 million, or $0.54 per diluted share, versus adjusted income from continuing operations in the fourth quarter 2010 of $12.2 million, or $0.37 per diluted share, a 46% increase per diluted share. Net income for the fourth quarter 2011 was $21.5 million, or $0.68 per diluted share, compared to $5.4 million, or $0.16 per diluted share in the prior year period. See attached reconciliation of reported amounts to adjusted amounts.
Fourth Quarter 2011 Highlights (compared to the prior year period):
- Total revenues increased 8% to $1.1 billion
- New vehicle retail revenues increased 6%, including 4% from same store revenues
- Used vehicle retail revenues up 21%, including 18% from same store revenues
- Finance and insurance revenues up 24%
- Total gross profit up 8% with increases in all business lines
- SG&A expense as a percent of gross profit improved 200 basis points to 74.7%
2011 Strategic Updates:
- Paid down debt by over $95 million during the year; year-end 2011 leverage at 2.8x Total Debt/Adjusted EBITDA compared to 3.9x at year-end 2010
- Repurchased $45 million of Asbury common stock during the year; approximately 8% of our common shares outstanding
- Completed $30 million in lease buy-outs
- Purchased $16 million of real estate in anticipation of future lease expiration
- Completed the sale of heavy truck business for an after-tax gain of $15.8 million
- Completed $900 million five-year credit facility; improved terms and interest rates
- DMS conversions 100% completed; common systems across all stores
"Asbury is pleased to announce extremely strong results," said Craig T. Monaghan, Asbury's President and Chief Executive Officer. "These results are a culmination of the hard work and determination of the Asbury team as we continue to transform the Company into a best-in-class automotive retailer. With a strong operational and financial foundation in place, we look forward to 2012."
Asbury's Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer Michael S. Kearney added, "We believe the challenges that our Japanese branded dealerships experienced over the last two quarters are largely behind us. Considering the increasing number of consumers looking for more fuel efficient vehicles, the improving availability of consumer credit, and the strong pipeline of new products coming from all of our manufacturing partners, we believe we are well positioned as we enter 2012."
For the full year 2011, adjusted income from continuing operations was $59.3 million, or $1.82 per diluted share, versus adjusted income from continuing operations of $46.9 million, or $1.41 per diluted share, in the prior year. Net income for the full year 2011 was $67.9 million, or $2.08 per diluted share, compared to $38.1 million, or $1.14 per diluted share in the prior year. See attached reconciliation of reported amounts to adjusted amounts. Revenues for the full year 2011 totaled $4.3 billion, an increase of 10% compared to the prior year.
Asbury will host a conference call to discuss its fourth quarter and year-end results this morning at 10:00 a.m. Eastern Time. The call will be simulcast live on the Internet and can be accessed by logging onto http://www.asburyauto.com or http://www.ccbn.com. In addition, a live audio of the call will be accessible to the public by calling (888) 452-4004 (domestic), or (719) 325-2144 (international); passcode - 5486961. Callers should dial in approximately 5 to 10 minutes before the call begins.
About Asbury Automotive Group, Inc.
Asbury Automotive Group, Inc. ("Asbury"), headquartered in Duluth, Georgia, a suburb of Atlanta, is one of the largest automobile retailers in the U.S. Built through a combination of organic growth and a series of strategic acquisitions, Asbury currently operates 79 retail auto stores, encompassing 99 franchises for the sale and servicing of 30 different brands of American, European and Asian automobiles. Asbury offers customers an extensive range of automotive products and services, including new and used vehicle sales and related financing and insurance, vehicle maintenance and repair services, replacement parts and service contracts.
This press release contains "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 and other federal securities laws. Forward-looking statements are statements other than historical fact, and may include statements relating to goals, plans, market conditions and projections regarding Asbury's financial position, liquidity, results of operations, market position and dealership portfolio, the benefits of its restructuring program and other initiatives and future business strategy. These statements are based on management's current expectations and beliefs and involve significant risks and uncertainties that may cause actual results to differ materially from those set forth in the statements. These risks and uncertainties include, among other things, market factors, Asbury's relationships with, and the financial and operational stability of, vehicle manufacturers and other suppliers, acts of God which may adversely impact supply from vehicle manufacturers and/or present retail sales challenges, risks associated with Asbury's indebtedness (including compliance with its financial covenants), Asbury's relationships with, and the financial stability of, its lenders and lessors, risks related to competition in the automotive retail and service industries, general economic conditions both nationally and locally, governmental regulations, legislation, adverse results in litigation and other proceedings, and Asbury's ability to execute its IT initiatives and other operational strategies, Asbury's ability to leverage gains from its dealership portfolio, Asbury's ability to capitalize on favorable opportunities to repurchase its debt and equity securities or purchase properties that it currently leases, and Asbury's ability to stay within its targeted range for capital expenditures. There can be no guarantees that Asbury's plans for future operations will be successfully implemented or that they will prove to be commercially successful.