Marine Products Corp. reports 4Q, year-end results

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Marine Products Corp., the builder of Chaparral and Robalo boats, reported a 34.2 percent increase in fourth-quarter net sales and ended its fiscal year with a 5.4 percent increase in sales.

For the quarter that ended Dec. 31, Atlanta-based Marine Products generated net sales of $27,937,000, compared with $20,814,000 last year. The increase in net sales was attributable to a 37.4 percent increase in the number of boats sold. Unit sales increased in most of its product lines and also increased because of sales of Chaparral’s H2O Sport and Fish & Ski boats and its entry-level Robalo 180 and 200, the company reported.

This increase was partially offset by a slight decrease in the average selling price per boat. Average selling prices decreased because of a shift in model mix toward the production of smaller boats.

Gross profit for the quarter was $5,505,000, or 19.7 percent of net sales, compared with a gross profit of $3,595,000, or 17.3 percent of net sales, in the prior year. The increase in gross profit in the fourth quarter of 2011, compared with the prior year, was attributable to higher unit sales during the fourth quarter of 2011.

Operating profit for the quarter was $2,059,000, a significant increase, compared with an operating profit of $414,000 in the fourth quarter of last year. Marine Products said its operating profit increased primarily because of higher net sales and gross profit.

Net sales for the 12 months that ended Dec. 31 were $106,437,000, a 5.4 percent increase from the previous year. Net income in 2011 was $6,731,000, or 18 cents a diluted share. Net income, excluding other income, for the 12-month period was $4,706,000 or 13 cents a diluted share, compared with net income of $3,853,000 or 11 cents a diluted share, in the prior year.

“During the fourth quarter of 2011, Marine Products Corporation generated increased sales, compared to the prior quarter and prior year, for the first time in several quarters. A significant percentage of our net sales increase was due to sales of our new Chaparral H2O,” CEO Richard Hubbell said in a statement. “In addition, our value-priced Robalo outboard sport fishing boat has been well received by dealers and consumers, and we are beginning to generate increased unit sales from this model, as well. In spite of lower average selling prices resulting from sales of these two models, our gross profit margin has improved due to leverage of our fixed overhead costs over higher production volumes.”

Hubbell also reported that the company has seen increased sales at the early winter boat shows.

“We have increased our production during the first quarter to meet current and anticipated demand, especially among our new entry-level models. Our dealer inventories are healthy and order backlog is higher than at this time last year,” he said. “In recognition of our continued strong balance sheet, improving financial results and generally favorable outlook for 2012, our board of directors yesterday voted to reinstate a regular quarterly dividend. This 2 cent-per-share dividend is an increase, compared with our most recent quarterly dividend of 1 cent per share, which was declared and paid during the first quarter of 2009.”

Marine Products’ stock closed Tuesday at $5.59 a share. Its 52-week high and low are $8.04 and $3.12.

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