AKRON—Myers Industries Inc. reported a net loss of $2.7 million for the quarter ended Sept. 30, despite a 14.6-percent jump in sales to $162.1 million from the 2013 quarter.
The sales increase was attributed to Myers' acquisition in July of Scepter Corp., but weak agricultural commodity prices and Brazilian automotive production declines negatively affected its Material Handling Segment's sales and earnings during the quarter.
Operating earnings for the Distribution Segment—which includes the company's Myers Tire Supply subsidiary—plunged 34.3 percent to $4.1 million as sales fell 3.4 percent to $49.9 million. A change in product mix and higher logistics costs during the quarter contributed to the decrease in adjusted income before taxes compared with the third quarter of 2013, according to Myers.
For the nine-month period, Myers' earnings plummeted 83.7 percent to $3.7 million as sales rose 5.8 percent to $465.4 million, compared with the year-ago period.
The Distribution Segment's operating earnings fell 27.8 percent to $12.7 million as sales slid 7.5 percent to $143.6 million for the period.
In June Akron-based Myers announced it was selling its Lawn and Garden segment and that the segment would be reported as discontinued operations. The company also sold its WEK Industries Inc. unit, which had been part of its Engineered Products segment.
Myers consolidated its operations into two segments: Materials Handling and Distribution. Ameri-Kart, previously part of the Engineered Products Segment, is now part of the Material Handling Segment while Patch Rubber Co., previously part of the Engineered Products Segment, is now part of the Distribution Segment, which also includes Myers Tire Supply.
In July Myers acquired for $157 million Scepter Corp. and Scepter Manufacturing L.L.C., makers of portable fuel and water containers and accessories, ammunition containers and storage totes.
“While Scepter's sales contribution did significantly increase our Material Handling Segment's total sales during the quarter, the segment's end markets were negatively impacted by weak sales and increased freight and distribution costs,” said John C. Orr, Myers president and CEO.
“We remain positive about 2015 and are excited to continue the transformation of Myers Industries from four disparate operating segments to two higher margin, cash-producing segments: Material Handling and Distribution.”
Orr said the operational simplification allows for better management focus and that the sale of its Lawn and Garden business to be completed in the first half of 2015.
Myers said it anticipates the current soft market conditions and product mix issues, which have continued into the fourth quarter, may result in a decrease in adjusted earnings from continuing operations (excluding restructuring and other unusual pre-tax charges) for the second half and full year of 2014.
Capital expenditures for the first nine months totaled $10.9 million and are expected to total between $20 million and $25 million for the full year, the company said.