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Interline Brands Sales Fall 11.2% in 1Q

Interline Brands, Inc., Jacksonville, FL, a distributor and direct marketer of maintenance, repair and operations products, reported sales for the first quarter ended March 27, 2009, were down 11.2% to $256.8 million from the prior-year period.
Average organic daily sales decreased 12.9% for the quarter. Interline's facilities maintenance end-market, which comprised 72% of sales, declined 6.7% during the first quarter on an average daily sales basis, and declined 9.2% on an average organic daily sales basis. The pro contractor end-market, which comprised 16% of sales, declined 27.3% in the quarter and the specialty distributor end-market, which comprised 12% of sales, declined 9.4% for the quarter.
Profit was $2.9 million, down from $8.6 million in the prior-year period.
Michael Grebe, Interline's CEO, said: "Overall, visibility remains low and the environment continues to be challenged by broader economic headwinds that we do not expect to abate in the near term. Certain maintenance, repair, and operations products, particularly our janitorial and sanitation offering, remain a more steady part of our portfolio. We continue to focus our sales channels to capitalize on these products and the relative stability of their demand.
"Unfortunately, continued weakness in the housing sector coupled with increasing softness in the apartment market have adversely impacted our performance and more than offset relative gains in our institutional markets. As residential and remodeling activity resumes to more normalized levels, we look forward to significant performance improvements in these areas."
Interline expects to see continued soft demand in most of its major markets.
Interline maintenance, repair and operations products to a diversified customer base of professional contractors, facilities maintenance professionals, and specialty distributors primarily throughout the U.S., Canada, the Caribbean and Central America.

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