MarineMax reports fourth quarter, fiscal year results

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MarineMax today reported a decline in same-store sales for the quarter and the fiscal year, and a net loss for the fiscal year of more than $134 million.

Revenue for the quarter was $165.6 million, compared to $318.2 million for the comparable quarter last year. Same-store sales declined approximately 45 percent compared to a 1 percent decrease in the comparable quarter last year.

Revenue from stores recently opened or closed that were ineligible for inclusion in the same-store sales base was $4 million.

The net loss for the fourth quarter was $11.1 million, or 60 cents per share, compared to net earnings of $6.6 million, or 35 cents per diluted share, for the comparable quarter last year. Included in the fourth quarter fiscal 2008 net loss was 9 cents per share of costs associated with the closing of seven stores during the quarter.

“The already difficult economic environment grew increasingly challenging as the September quarter progressed resulting from the growing turmoil in the financial markets, which impacted our results as well as those of most other retailers,” said William H. McGill Jr., MarineMax chairman, president and CEO. “We are accelerating our actions to adjust our cost structure to be in better alignment with current market trends.”

In midmorning trading, MarineMax stock was at $1.48 a share, up from its previous close of $1.25 per share. Its 52-week high and low are $16.68 and $1.25.

In a call this morning with analysts, McGill also said hurricanes had a big impact on sales in the fourth quarter, and customers couldn’t get financing as named storms approached. There were more cancellations than expected, he said.

“Despite the substantial decline in sales we experienced during the September quarter, our efforts to manage our inventories resulted in a slight decline in our year-end inventory levels compared with those at the end of the prior year,” McGill said. “We have also further reduced our expected purchases from manufacturers for the 2009 model year.”

Company officials said they ordered 70 percent fewer 2009 units. Also, they noted, their agreement with Ferretti expired and was not renewed, and the company is in the process of repurchasing units.

MarineMax also plans to reduce costs through a reduction in employees, though no specific numbers were given this morning. A continued evaluation of retail locations was expected as well, though the company does not plan to vacate any current market. Still, consolidation of stores was not ruled out.

At the same time, MarineMax plans to expand certain brands into different areas of the country, such as bringing Hatteras and Cabo to the New York/New Jersey market, officials said this morning.

For the fiscal year ending Sept. 30, revenue was $885.4 million, compared with $1.26 billion for fiscal 2007. Same-store sales declined approximately 28 percent compared to less than a 1 percent decline for the previous fiscal year.

Revenue from stores recently opened or closed that were ineligible for inclusion in the same-store sales base was $11 million.

The net loss for the fiscal year was $134.3 million, or $7.30 per share, compared to net income of $20.1 million, or $1.04 per diluted share, for fiscal 2007. The company’s results for the fiscal year included a non-cash charge of $122.1 million before tax, or approximately $6.28 per share, related to the impairment of goodwill and intangibles as well as a valuation allowance related to deferred tax assets.

Despite the news, McGill said financing is out there for qualified buyers, and people are still enjoying the boating lifestyle.

MarineMax had a “pretty decent” Fort Lauderdale show, McGill said, noting that although attendance was down, “at the end of the day the buyers were still there, and we were making sales. I think we were a little surprised at the level of business we did.

“That’s our hope for the future, that they’re going to be there, lined up and ready to get that new boat” when the economy turns around, he said.

Based in Clearwater, Fla., MarineMax is the nation’s largest recreational boat retailer, with 80 locations around the country.

— Beth Rosenberg
b.rosenberg@tradeonlytoday.com

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