Columbia Sportswear Co. (Nasdaq: COLM) had a 1.4 percent increase in net sales to $217.3 million for the fourth quarter ended Dec. 31, 2002, compared to 2001’s $214.3 million in the same period. The company had a net income for the fourth quarter of $29.1 million, a 20.2 percent increase over net income of $24.2 million for the same period in 2001. Earnings per share for the fourth quarter of 2002 were 72 cents diluted, on 40.3 million weighted average shares, compared to earnings per share of 61 cents diluted for the fourth quarter of 2001 on 39.9 million weighted average shares.
Compared to 2001’s fourth quarter, Columbia’s domestic shares for the 2002 period decreased by 4.5 percent to $145.8 million, Canadian sales increased by 3.3 percent to $24.9 million, European sales increased by 16.1 percent to $23.1 million, and other international sales increased 33.5 percent to reach $23.5 million. When measured in constant dollar terms, the company’s European sales grew by 6.4 percent for the fourth quarter of 2002.
Growth in consolidated sales for the period was driven by the company’s sportswear business, which grew 20.4 percent during the period, but was offset by soft Columbia branded footwear sales which declined 19.5 percent. The footwear decline was the result of warm weather in the United States during the 2001 winter coupled with the lack of fresh product for the season, both of which negatively impacted the fall 2002 preseason footwear orders, according to the company.
For fiscal year 2002, Columbia reported record net sales of $816.3 million, an increase of 4.7 percent over net sales of $779.6 million for 2001. It also reported net income for 2002 of $102.5 million, an increase of 15.4 percent to the company’s net income of $88.8 million for 2001. Earnings per share for 2002 were $2.56 diluted, on 40.1 million weighted average shares outstanding for the period, compared to $2.23 diluted on 39.8 million weighted average shares outstanding for 2001.
Tim Boyle, Columbia’s president and CEO, said in a statement, “Our steadfast approach to tight inventory management and effective cost controls has allowed us to achieve healthy gains in sales and net income, even in the face of a continuing difficult retail environment. With exciting new product flowing into the stores for the upcoming spring season in all categories, including footwear, and favorable reviews for our fall 2003 product offerings generally, I remain optimistic about the future of Columbia’s business.”