Pentair, Inc., Minneapolis, MN, reported fourth quarter sales decreased 5% to $768 million, compared with $807 million in the fourth quarter of 2007. Profit declined 90.5% to $4.6 million, primarily a result of losses on disposal of discontinued operations.
For 2008, sales were $3.35 billion, up 2.2% from 2007. Profit increased 8.4% to $229 million.
Through the first three quarters of 2008, a period when we met or exceeded our financial outlook, we recognized the global economy was slowing and we began taking aggressive cost reduction actions, CEO Randall J. Hogan said. "However, as we exited the third quarter, the speed and magnitude of the economic deterioration increased dramatically. This caused us to miss our original fourth quarter sales and earnings forecasts and set into motion an acceleration of additional cost actions. By the end of 2009, when compared to June of 2008, we will have reduced our headcount by over 15 percent and closed 17 facilities."
The Water Group delivered $509 million in sales during the fourth quarter, a 6% decline year-over-year. Slowing international and non-residential markets joined continuing softness in North American residential markets to negatively impact sales.
Technical Products delivered fourth quarter 2008 sales of $258 million, a decrease of 2% versus the year-earlier period as industrial and commercial demand slowed throughout the quarter.