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W.W. Grainger is getting out of the integrated supply business, in a move that doesn't surprise many industry watchers as the unit's performance stagnated the past several years. The segment had an operating loss of $1 million in the quarter as compared to earnings of $0.5 million in the same period in 2003. The company announced it would fulfill but not renew existing integrated supply accounts, and merge the business into its industrial supply division. Annual financials recap here.
Grainger reported sales for the year ended Dec. 31, 2004 of $5.05 billion for 2004 were up 8 percent versus 2003. Net earnings for the year were $287 million, up 26 percent as compared to $227 million in 2003. Sales in the 2004 fourth quarter were $1.3 billion, up 10 percent versus the prior year fourth quarter. The 2004 quarter had one less sales day than the 2003 quarter. Sales on a daily basis were up 11 percent. Net earnings of $90 million were up 46 percent versus $62 million in the 2003 fourth quarter. Annual financials recap here.
Kennametal Inc., Latrobe, PA, has signed a definitive agreement to purchase Extrude Hone Corporation, Irwin, PA, for approximately $137 million, net of acquired cash and estimated direct acquisition costs. Founded in 1951, Extrude Hone Corp. supplies engineered component process technology to customers in a variety of industries around the world. Extrude Hone's major manufacturing locations are in the U.S., Germany, and Ireland. The firm's processes and materials, which focus on component deburring, polishing, and producing controlled radii, are designed to improve the customer's performance in both their manufacturing processes and end products. More...
Who's on first? In a move to increase strength in its core vertical markets, Activant Solutions Inc., Austin, TX, has agreed to acquire Speedware Corporation Inc. Montreal, Quebec, including its operating divisions Enterprise Computer Systems (ECS) Inc., Prelude Systems Inc., OpenERP Solutions, and Speedware Ltd. The anticipated acquisition would grow Activant's installed base to over 20,000 customer locations. Prelude, which reported approximately $13 million in revenue for the year ended Jun. 30, 2004, was acquired by Speedware last year. Activant has identified four key vertical segments for the company's growth, which are lumber and building materials, automotive aftermarket, wholesale trade, and hardware and home center retailing. More...
Airgas, Inc., Radnor, PA, the largest U.S. distributor of industrial, medical and specialty gases, welding, safety and related products, reported third quarter sales increased 35% to $612 million, reflecting continued same-store sales growth, the consolidation of National Welders Supply Company (a joint venture affiliate), as well as acquisitions. National Welders contributed sales of $43 million; excluding this amount, sales grew 26%. Total same-store sales were up 9% compared to the same quarter a year ago, with gas and rent up 5% and hardgoods up 14%. These results reflect continued improvement in manufacturing and other industrial market segments. Net earnings for the third quarter ended Dec. 31, 2004 grew 10% to $23 million, compared to $20.9 million in the same period a year ago. The company also announced price increases from 6 percent to 15 percent. More...
Applied Industrial Technologies, Cleveland, OH, reported net sales for its second quarter ended Dec. 31, 2004, were $404.1 million, up 12.4 percent from $359.7 million in the same period a year ago. Net