Koss barely remains profitable

Slow retail sales during the recession are hurting Glendale-based Koss Corp., which makes high-fidelity stereophones. The company reported fiscal fourth quarter net income of $602,683, or 16 cents per diluted share, down 52 percent compared to 2008 fiscal fourth quarter net income of $1.26 million, or 34 cents per diluted share.

Net sales for the quarter were down 32 percent to $8.26 million, compared to $12.2 million for the fourth quarter of fiscal 2008.

"Our company has passed through the most challenging eight month period in 25 years and managed to post a profit," said Michael J. Koss, president and CEO. "The additional good news is the fact that the company did not curtail its product development, engineering, and marketing efforts despite the reduction in sales that threatened our profitability."

Koss said that the company’s sales have been soft both domestically and internationally.

"This is the first time in seven years that we did not post significant growth in our European export sales," he said. "Our sales to the automotive industry, education and U.S. mass market retailers also suffered setbacks as a direct result of the recession triggered by the credit crises this past autumn."

Net income for the full fiscal year fell 56 percent to $1.98 million compared to $4.5 million for fiscal 2008. Sales for the full fiscal year were down 19 percent to $38.2 million compared to $47 million for fiscal 2008.

"We are fortunate to have passed through this period profitably and with a significant investment made in our future products," Koss said. "The economy has been extremely difficult to understand. We have seen positive signs as early as March that failed to gain sustainable traction in the market. With this in mind, we are beginning the new fiscal year cautiously monitoring the credit availability in our export markets, and inventory re-stocking orders at our major U.S. domestic retailers."

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