Brady Corp. caps strong fiscal year

Brady Corp. reported that net income for its full fiscal year increased to $108.7 million, $2.04 per share, from $82.0 million, or $1.55 per share, in the previous year.
Sales for the year-ended July 31, 2011, were up 6.4 percent to $1.34 billion compared with $1.26 billion for the year ended July 31, 2010. By segment, organic sales increased 3.2 percent in the Americas, 4.7 percent in Europe and 0.4 percent in the Asia-Pacific region.
Brady’s net income for the fourth quarter was up 37.0 percent to $29.6 million from $21.6 million in the period a year ago.
The company also announced that its board of directors authorized a share buyback program for up to 2 million shares of the company’s Class A common stock. The share repurchase plan may be implemented from time to time on the open market or in privately negotiated transactions.
"I am pleased with our strong earnings and cash flow both in the fourth quarter and the full fiscal year in light of a still challenging economy and relative moderate organic growth for the company. This is a testament to the positive impact BBPS is having on efficiency and productivity. During fiscal 2011, we returned $38.1 million of cash to our shareholders in the form of dividends, repaid $61.3 million of debt while increasing our cash position by $75.1 million; ending with $390 million of cash on hand at July 31, 2011," said Frank Jaehnert, Brady’s president and chief executive officer. "I’m also happy to report that our board of directors authorized a share buyback program for up to 2 million shares and approved an increase in the dividend to our shareholders for the 26th straight year."
"We remain focused on putting our cash to work through investment in organic growth opportunities as well as strategic acquisitions," said Brady chief financial officer Thomas Felmer. "As we look into fiscal 2012, we remain cautious about the health of the overall global economy. We believe that the pace of economic growth will be modest. Accordingly, we anticipate low-single-digit organic sales growth in fiscal 2012. For fiscal 2012, we expect earnings per diluted Class A Common Share of between $2.30 and $2.50, exclusive of after-tax restructuring charges. This guidance is based on current exchange rates, a full-year tax rate in the mid-20 percent range, capital expenditures of approximately $25 million, and depreciation and amortization of $45 million."

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