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Economic Report -- By Robin Ashton
Strong Fourth Quarter Boosts Annual Gains For Public E&S Companies


Revenues jumped significantly for most of the publicly reporting equipment and supplies companies in the fourth quarter 2013, pushing annual sales higher for the full year. The numbers are compiled by John Muldowney, a marketing executive at the Boelter Cos., exclusively for Foodservice Equipment Reports.

Four of the five equipment-oriented companies and both supplies-oriented companies reported increased revenues in Q4 vs. the same quarter in 2012. Combined revenues of the five equipment companies jumped 9.6%, while the two supplies companies saw a 2.3% gain. Combined revenues for all seven firms rose 8.4% in the quarter.

Three of the five equipment companies posted double-digit gains for the final quarter of the year. Rational Americas saw sales jump 29.2%, Middleby Foodservice reported a 14.7% increase, and Manitowoc Foodservice said sales rose 10.1%. In a sign the spec markets are finally improving, ITW FEG revenues rose and estimated 7%. Only Standex Foodservice experienced a small decline in revenues, down 2.9% during the quarter.

On the supplies side, Libby Foodservice said sales rose a modest 1.9%, while Carlisle Foodservice was up 3.3% for the quarter.

For the calendar year, the seven companies had a combined revenue increase of 4.4% with four of the seven posting gains for the year. (Out of the seven, only Standex has a fiscal year different from the calendar year, but its results are calendarized.) The equipment companies posted an overall gain of 5.5%, while the two supplies companies were off 1.3% in revenues for the year.

For the 12 months of 2013 vs. the year prior, Rational was up 14%, Middleby 13.9%, Manitowoc 3.8% and ITW FEG 2.9%. Standex saw revenues off 1.4% for the year. Libbey sales fell 1% iní13, while Carlisle was off 1.8%.

The results, if borne out by numbers from the not-yet-released MAFSI Barometer, will probably lead FER to revise upward its current estimate of total industry E&S sales for 2013. The estimate currently stands at 3.3%.

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