Libbey Inc. recently reported results for the fourth quarter ended December 31, 2014. Sales for the fourth quarter were $231.4 million, compared to $221.0 million for the fourth quarter of 2013, an increase of 4.7% (7.1% excluding currency fluctuation). Net income for the fourth quarter was $19.8 million, compared to $9.3 million in the prior-year fourth quarter. Adjusted net income for the fourth quarter was $11.9 million, compared to the $12.8 million adjusted net income recorded in the fourth quarter of 2013. Adjusted earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (adjusted EBITDA) for the quarter was $30.7 million, compared to $37.6 million in the prior-year quarter. Adjusted EBITDA of $30.7 million was at the high end of the company’s previous guidance of $29.0 million to $31.0 million.
“For the third consecutive quarter, we were able to defend and grow our market share in an extremely competitive market, as sales grew in each of our segments, excluding currency impacts,” said Stephanie A. Streeter, CEO. “Adjusted EBITDA results were positively impacted by our North American capacity realignment and productivity improvements, but these gains were offset by the items we outlined at our Investor Day in January: costs associated with an earlier-than-planned furnace repair, strategic growth initiatives, negative sales mix, higher-than-expected currency impact from the weaker peso and euro and unplanned non-income tax assessments. We are pleased with our overall company sales growth of 4.7%, 7.1% excluding currency fluctuation, during the quarter. We look forward to continuing our strong sales performance during 2015, as we leverage the investments we have made in new products, sales and marketing capabilities.”
“We generated a significant amount of free cash flow during the fourth quarter, as a result of working capital reductions of over $38 million and receipt of approximately $10 million in insurance proceeds related to a claim for the furnace malfunction in 2013,” said Sherry Buck, CFO. “We also continued to realize lower interest expense during the fourth quarter, compared to the prior year, which resulted in a reduction of over $9 million of interest expense for the full year. As we look to 2015, we expect to continue our strong free cash flow performance.
“Since the implementation of our 10b5-1 share repurchase plan on December 15, 2014, we have repurchased over 180,000 shares of stock at an average purchase price of approximately $32.92 per share. At a minimum, we would expect to repurchase all 1.5 million shares under our current authorization by year-end 2017.”
The company has provided a performance outlook for 2015 consistent with the long-term goals it disclosed at its January 23 Investor Day. For 2015, the company expects sales growth of approximately 3% (5-6% on a constant currency basis); adjusted EBITDA margins of approximately 15%; and capital expenditures in the range of $55 million to $60 million.