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Chicago-based MRO products distributor Lawson Products Inc. (NASDAQ:LAWS) reported sales for 2013 were $269.5 million, down 1.4 percent from 2012. Lawson Products reported a net loss of $5.1 million for the year.
Fourth-quarter sales were $65.7 million, up from $64.5 million in the prior-year period.
Average daily sales in the quarter were up 2 percent to $1.078 million. Sales rep headcount was up by 22 reps from the end of third quarter 2013 to the end of fourth quarter 2013.
Net loss for the fourth quarter was $2.9 million.
“The fourth quarter results reflect our continued progress to improve our operations and add to our sales force,” said Michael DeCata, president and CEO. “Our previous investments and focus on cost controls now provide a platform for future growth. During 2013, we expanded our territorial coverage by adding 49 direct sales representatives. It was the first year in eight years that we increased our direct sales rep count and the second consecutive quarter with a sales increase over the prior year.”
The distributor recently closed on selling its Automatic Screw Machine Products Company for $12.5 million in cash. In the fourth quarter, Lawson Products agreed to sublease a portion of the company’s leased headquarters, which will result in a future net cash savings of $2.9 million through the life of the sublease term through March 2023. The distributor also settled a previous employment tax matter with the IRS for $0.8 million, less than the previously established reserve of $1.2 million.
Read about some of the changes Lawson Products has made in recent years in this article from the MDM Archives: The Transformation of Lawson Products.