Johnson Controls reports record quarter

Glendale-based Johnson Controls Inc., Wisconsin’s largest publicly traded company, reported record fiscal first quarter earnings and revenues.
The company’s quarterly net income rose to $410 million or 60 cents per share, up from $375 million, or 55 cents per share, in the same period last year.
The firm’s quarterly net sales grew to $10.4 billion from $9.5 billion a year ago.
“Our first quarter results were in line with the expectations we announced at the beginning of the year. The automotive and buildings markets were stable in the quarter and we benefitted from our record backlogs in both businesses,” said Stephen Roell, chairman and chief executive officer of Johnson Controls. “Automotive Experience revenues grew at a double-digit pace across all geographic regions and Building Efficiency commercial revenues and backlog were higher in a challenged global market. Power Solutions improved sales and income despite the soft demand for aftermarket batteries resulting from unseasonably warm winter temperatures globally.”
Roell added, “Our growth in the first quarter is evidence of continued market share gains as we sustainably outperform our underlying industries. We took steps to improve our execution and added resources to improve quality and productivity. At the same time, we continued to invest in order to support our global growth and margin expansion opportunities.”
Automotive Experience sales in the 2012 quarter increased 15 percent.
Despite the record results, Johnson Controls announced it was lowering its earnings expectations for fiscal 2012, due to several factors, including lower automotive production in Europe, weather-related softness in aftermarket battery demand, a shutdown of its plant in Shanghai, rising metals costs and lower residential HVAC demand.
As a result, the company said it believes its second quarter 2012 earnings will be approximately 52 to 54 cents. For the full year, the earnings expectation is revised to a range of $2.70 to $2.85 (up 13 to 19 percent) vs. earlier guidance of $2.85 to $3.00.
Johnson Controls said it was confident in its second half of 2012 outlook, noting that the 2011 second half earnings were significantly impacted by the Japan tsunami-related automotive disruption. In addition, the company’s second half 2012 earnings will benefit from the full-year impact of the automotive acquisitions, cost reduction initiatives and investments in Power Solutions.
“While there are some short-term changes to our original 2012 expectations, our primary growth and profitability story is intact,” Roell said. “We believe actions we have taken to improve our execution and profitability will provide momentum through the balance of the year and beyond. Despite the near-term challenges, we believe Johnson Controls will deliver double-digit earnings increases in 2012.”

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