Mohawk Industries sales up 10 percent

Mohawk Industries sales up 10 percent

November 4th, 2011 by Dave Flessner in Business Around the Region

Melissa Kernea prepares to pick up a load of yarn off of a conveyor belt at Mohawk Industries, Inc. in Dalton, Ga., in this file photo.

Photo by Staff File Photo/Times Free Press.

Mohawk Industries Inc. on Thursday reported lower net income in the third quarter and forecast fourth quarter results below what analysts had expected.

The Calhoun, Ga.,-based carpet maker said Thursday it earned $47 million, or 68 cents per share, on sales of $1.4 billion. Excluding unusual items, Mohawk said its adjusted net earnings were $57 million, or 83 cents per share.

The company boosted revenues 10 percent above a year ago, when third quarter profits totaled $51 million, or 74 cents per share, on sales of $1.3 billion.

Analysts had expected third-quarter earnings of 86 cents a share this year, according to Thomson Reuters.

Mohawk CEO Jeffrey S. Lorberbaum said the company continues to battle "increased raw material costs and consumer reluctance to invest in renovation projects."

Nonetheless, Mohawk revenues were well ahead of the industry gains. Kemp Harr, publisher and owner of Floor Focus Magazine, projects carpet revenues for all of 2011 should be up by about 3 percent this year over last - the first yearly gain since 2007.

Lorberbaum said Mohawk "continues to lower costs with new processes, reduced infrastructure and investment in more efficient assets.

"We have implemented hundreds of manufacturing initiatives yielding significant cost savings in 2011," he said.

Mohawk has closed mills in the North Georgia towns of Rome, Calhoun, Cartersville and Chatsworth over the past couple of years, laying off 1,210 workers.

Lorberbaum said Mohawk also has implemented two price increases during 2011 to help try to offset higher energy and raw material prices.

Contact Dave Flessner at dflessner@timesfreepress.com or at 757-6340