Crown Crafts 3Q a long, hard slog
November 13, 2003,
Gonzales, La — With sales tumbling by more than 20 percent, hurt by a sluggish economy and big shifts in customer buying patterns, second-quarter profits were slashed by more than half at Crown Crafts Inc., falling to $924,000 from $2.1 million last year.
Sales at the big producer of infant and juvenile products dropped 22.5 percent, to $22.0 million from $28.4 million last year. Providing some relief to the bottom line, the company continued to hack away at operating costs and interest expense. Expenses were pared by 18.2 percent, to $2.8 million from $3.5 million a year ago, generating a cash savings of $630,000. Interest expense was rolled back by 13.0 percent, to $1.0 million from $1.2 million, a further savings of $154,000. The lower interest costs resulted from a lower average debt balance and reduced interest rates.
Sales, the company said, were hit by a losing trifecta of a sluggish economy; inventory reductions at retail; and a tough comparison with a year-ago quarter when the company rolled out substantial new product programs.