Miller Industries profits drop, but CEO says fundamentals remain strong

Miller Industries profits drop, but CEO says fundamentals remain strong

August 9th, 2017 by Dave Flessner in Breaking News

The Ooltewah, Tenn., branch of Miller Industries Inc. is shown on Sept. 12, 2013.

Photo by Staff File Photo /Times Free Press.

Net income for Miller Industries, Inc. declined by 17.2 percent in the second quarter compared with the record high performance a year ago for the Ooltewah-based tow truck equipment maker.

But Miller Industries CEO Jeff Badgley said today the company "continued to see positive trends in both our domestic and international businesses."

Miller said today it earned $5.4 million, or 48 cents per share, on sales of $153.1 million in the spring quarter. In the same period a year ago, Miller earned $6.6 million, or 58 cents per share, on sales of $156.1 million.

Gross profit for the second quarter of 2017 was $17.6 million, or 11.5 percent of net sales, compared to $19.0 million, or 12.2 percent of net sales, for the second quarter of 2016.

"Top line results were consistent with our performance from previous quarters, driven by steady demand for our products and a favorable underlying environment," Badgley said in a statement today. "Our fundamentals also remain steady, as reflected by our healthy balance sheet and strong backlog."

The world's largest manufacturer of towing and recovery equipment is expanding its American production facilities, including its Tennessee plants in Ooltewah and Greeneville, and two others in Pennsylvania. Badgley said the Pennsylvania expansions are nearing completion and the company continues work on its $20 million expansion of its Ooltewah tow-truck manufacturing plant that will help increase its wrecker production capability.

Included in the Ooltewah expansion is a 30,000-square-foot paint facility with high-tech temperature and moisture controls and an environmentally friendly dual-side, down-draft air filtration and collection system.

Miller Industries also announced today it will pay its quarterly dividend of 18 cents per share on Sept. 18 to shareholders of record at the close of business on Sept. 11.

"As we enter the second half of 2017, I am encouraged by the continued direction of our business,"Badgley said. "We remain committed to maintaining a healthy balance sheet, streamlining our operations, and enhancing our production capabilities."