Royal Appliance Announces 150% Increase in Earnings Per Share for First Quarter of 2001 and New Stock Repurchase Program

Apr 12, 2001, 01:00 ET from Royal Appliance Mfg. Co.

    CLEVELAND, April 12 /PRNewswire/ -- Royal Appliance Mfg. Co. (NYSE:   RAM),
 maker of Dirt Devil(R) floor care products, reported today earnings per share
 for the quarter ended March 31, 2001 of $.15 per share, a 150 percent increase
 from the $.06 per share for the comparable period in 2000.  Net sales for the
 quarter ended March 31, 2001 were a record $104.5 million, compared to
 $103.5 million for the quarter ended March 31, 2000.
     Michael J. Merriman, Chief Executive Officer, stated, "Our record net
 sales over the past two years continued in the first quarter due in large part
 to strong consumer response to our innovative line of upright vacuums and
 carpet shampooers.  The strength of our line has enabled us to maintain the
 significant market share increases that have occurred over the past few years.
 This positive momentum should be fueled by the introduction of our new
 Platinum Force line of floorcare products in the second half of 2001."
     Merriman added, "Despite a slowing economy, heightened competition, and
 cost pressures on gross margins, we are aggressively following our new product
 innovation strategy.  We continue to cultivate technology licensing and
 sourcing opportunities with several global companies in our pursuit of unique
 consumer products that we can sell to our retail partners."
     The Company also reported today a program to purchase up to an additional
 3.4 million shares of its common stock.  This represents approximately 25% of
 the outstanding 13.7 million shares.  As previously disclosed, the Company has
 completed stock repurchases totaling 10.6 million shares during the past four
 years. This repurchase program will expire on December 31, 2002.
     Merriman commented that, "The Board of Directors has a long-term view of
 the Company and its prospects. Our revenue growth and market share gains in
 recent years has proven that we can effectively compete in the floorcare
 industry. Our previous stock repurchases have proven to be very accretive to
 our earnings per share without slowing our pace of innovation.  The new stock
 repurchase program will allow us to take advantage of our current liquidity,
 strong balance sheet and possible opportunities in the market for the
 Company's shares.  The actual number of shares to be acquired and the purchase
 price for such shares will be based on existing market conditions.  Any shares
 acquired will be available for employee benefit plans and for other corporate
 purposes.  At this time we have no specific plan for any common shares that
 may be purchased under the program."
     The Company develops, assembles, and markets vacuum cleaners and other
 cleaning appliances for home and commercial use under the Dirt Devil(R) and
 Royal(R) brand names.  The Company's executive offices are located at
 7005 Cochran Road, Glenwillow, Ohio 44139.  Web site address:
 www.dirtdevil.com
 
                                  COMPARATIVE FINANCIAL RESULTS
                                            (Unaudited)
                                         2001          2000
                             (In thousands, except per share amounts)
     3 months to March 31
     Net sales                         $104,522     $103,470
     Gross margin                        22,634       23,455
     Net income                           2,174        1,080
     Per share - diluted                  $0.15        $0.06
     Diluted weighted average number of
       common shares outstanding         14,231       16,717
     Per share - basic                    $0.16        $0.07
     Basic weighted average number of
       common shares outstanding         13,729       16,471
 
     Forward-looking statements in this release are made pursuant to the safe
 harbor provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995.
 Such forward-looking statements are subject to certain risks and uncertainties
 that could cause actual results to differ materially from those projected.
 Readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking
 statements which speak only as of the date hereof.  Potential risks and
 uncertainties include, but are not limited to:  general business and economic
 conditions; the financial strength of the retail industry particularly the
 major mass retail channel; the competitive pricing and aggressive product
 development environment, particularly in the bagless upright vacuum category
 within the floor care industry; the impact of private-label programs by mass
 retailers; the cost and effectiveness of planned advertising, marketing and
 promotional campaigns; the success at retail and the acceptance by consumers
 of the Company's new products, including the Company's bagless uprights,
 carpet shampooers and its first consumer electronics product, the Telezapper,
 to be introduced later this year; the dependence upon the Company's ability to
 continue to successfully develop and introduce innovative products; and the
 uncertainty of the Company's global suppliers to continuously supply sourced
 finished goods and component parts.
 
 

SOURCE Royal Appliance Mfg. Co.
    CLEVELAND, April 12 /PRNewswire/ -- Royal Appliance Mfg. Co. (NYSE:   RAM),
 maker of Dirt Devil(R) floor care products, reported today earnings per share
 for the quarter ended March 31, 2001 of $.15 per share, a 150 percent increase
 from the $.06 per share for the comparable period in 2000.  Net sales for the
 quarter ended March 31, 2001 were a record $104.5 million, compared to
 $103.5 million for the quarter ended March 31, 2000.
     Michael J. Merriman, Chief Executive Officer, stated, "Our record net
 sales over the past two years continued in the first quarter due in large part
 to strong consumer response to our innovative line of upright vacuums and
 carpet shampooers.  The strength of our line has enabled us to maintain the
 significant market share increases that have occurred over the past few years.
 This positive momentum should be fueled by the introduction of our new
 Platinum Force line of floorcare products in the second half of 2001."
     Merriman added, "Despite a slowing economy, heightened competition, and
 cost pressures on gross margins, we are aggressively following our new product
 innovation strategy.  We continue to cultivate technology licensing and
 sourcing opportunities with several global companies in our pursuit of unique
 consumer products that we can sell to our retail partners."
     The Company also reported today a program to purchase up to an additional
 3.4 million shares of its common stock.  This represents approximately 25% of
 the outstanding 13.7 million shares.  As previously disclosed, the Company has
 completed stock repurchases totaling 10.6 million shares during the past four
 years. This repurchase program will expire on December 31, 2002.
     Merriman commented that, "The Board of Directors has a long-term view of
 the Company and its prospects. Our revenue growth and market share gains in
 recent years has proven that we can effectively compete in the floorcare
 industry. Our previous stock repurchases have proven to be very accretive to
 our earnings per share without slowing our pace of innovation.  The new stock
 repurchase program will allow us to take advantage of our current liquidity,
 strong balance sheet and possible opportunities in the market for the
 Company's shares.  The actual number of shares to be acquired and the purchase
 price for such shares will be based on existing market conditions.  Any shares
 acquired will be available for employee benefit plans and for other corporate
 purposes.  At this time we have no specific plan for any common shares that
 may be purchased under the program."
     The Company develops, assembles, and markets vacuum cleaners and other
 cleaning appliances for home and commercial use under the Dirt Devil(R) and
 Royal(R) brand names.  The Company's executive offices are located at
 7005 Cochran Road, Glenwillow, Ohio 44139.  Web site address:
 www.dirtdevil.com
 
                                  COMPARATIVE FINANCIAL RESULTS
                                            (Unaudited)
                                         2001          2000
                             (In thousands, except per share amounts)
     3 months to March 31
     Net sales                         $104,522     $103,470
     Gross margin                        22,634       23,455
     Net income                           2,174        1,080
     Per share - diluted                  $0.15        $0.06
     Diluted weighted average number of
       common shares outstanding         14,231       16,717
     Per share - basic                    $0.16        $0.07
     Basic weighted average number of
       common shares outstanding         13,729       16,471
 
     Forward-looking statements in this release are made pursuant to the safe
 harbor provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995.
 Such forward-looking statements are subject to certain risks and uncertainties
 that could cause actual results to differ materially from those projected.
 Readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking
 statements which speak only as of the date hereof.  Potential risks and
 uncertainties include, but are not limited to:  general business and economic
 conditions; the financial strength of the retail industry particularly the
 major mass retail channel; the competitive pricing and aggressive product
 development environment, particularly in the bagless upright vacuum category
 within the floor care industry; the impact of private-label programs by mass
 retailers; the cost and effectiveness of planned advertising, marketing and
 promotional campaigns; the success at retail and the acceptance by consumers
 of the Company's new products, including the Company's bagless uprights,
 carpet shampooers and its first consumer electronics product, the Telezapper,
 to be introduced later this year; the dependence upon the Company's ability to
 continue to successfully develop and introduce innovative products; and the
 uncertainty of the Company's global suppliers to continuously supply sourced
 finished goods and component parts.
 
 SOURCE  Royal Appliance Mfg. Co.