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Marine Products reports 4Q, year-end results

Marine Products Corp., builder of Chaparral and Robalo boats, today reported a 41.5 percent drop in net sales for the fourth quarter ending Dec. 31, 2009.

Marine Products generated net sales of $13,313,000, compared to $22,764,000 last year. The decline was due to a 37.8 percent decrease in the number of boats sold and a 5.8 percent decrease in the average selling price per boat, according to the company.

"Units sold decreased among all of our product lines, as we operated at very low production levels in response to weak industry conditions," the company said in a statement. "The decrease in average selling price per boat was caused by an unfavorable model mix of smaller boats sold during the quarter compared to the prior year."

Operating loss for the fourth quarter was $4,756,000, compared to an operating loss of $1,831,000 in the same quarter of 2008, due to lower gross profit and higher selling, general and administrative expenses.

Net loss for the quarter was $2,764,000, compared to a net loss of $1,126,000 in the prior year. Loss per share for the quarter was 8 cents, compared to a loss of 3 cents per share in the prior year.

Net sales for the 12 months ending Dec. 31, 2009, were $48,471,000, a 72.4 percent decrease compared to 2008. Net loss for the 12-month period was $10,693,000, or 30 cents loss per share, compared to net income of $7,586,000, or 21 cents diluted earnings per share, in the prior year.

"During the third quarter of 2009, we introduced our 2010 models to the market and provided support to our dealers as they continue with their successful efforts to liquidate old inventory in preparation to sell updated products manufactured during the current model year," CEO Richard Hubbell said in a statement.

"The winter boat show season has begun and early indications are that attendance and sales are similar to or slightly higher than last year," he added. "Also, the availability of floorplan financing, the lack of which was a significant impediment during the boat show season in 2009, has improved for our financially stable dealers."

Hubbell said that by the end of the first quarter the company's unit production will be almost 100 percent higher than in the third and fourth quarters of 2009 to satisfy dealer demand for 2010 models.

"There are many signs confirming that this cycle has bottomed and we will leverage our financial strength, our position with our dealers and our fleet of updated models to serve our dealers and customers during 2010,"  he said.

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