Foodservice Equipment Reports

Public E&S Companies Reported Revenues Rose 6.7% In First Quarter 2011

The seven publicly traded or reporting foodservice equipment and supplies companies saw blended sales gain 6.7% in the first quarter 2011 versus the first quarter last year. It was the fourth consecutive quarter that blended sales for the group, whose revenues add up to nearly $2 billion annually, have risen versus the prior-year quarter. The data is compiled by John Muldowney, v.p.-marketing at Alto-Shaam and released to FER Fortnightly with permission of the company.

Sales for the five equipment-oriented companies rose 8.1% while sales at Carlisle and Libbey, the two supplies-oriented companies, rose only 0.7% combined. Severe winter weather in the first quarter was a factor in the flattening of supplies sales. Blended sales for the two companies were up 4.8% in the fourth quarter ’10.

The rate of gain for the seven companies fell somewhat from the strong 9.7% seen in the fourth quarter ’10, but matched the third quarter ’10 percentage increase and was ahead of the full-year gain of 4.2% in ’10. But as the market continues to recover, the increases are against prior-year quarters with more moderate negative numbers following the steep, double-digit declines from the fourth quarter ’08 through the third quarter ’09. Blended sales fell 4.3% in the first quarter ’10 and 4.2% fourth quarter ’09 after a brutal 18.9% drop third quarter ’09.

Among the five equipment oriented companies, Rational Americas, the smallest of the five by far, saw sales rise 11.6% in the quarter versus year prior. Standex reported sales at its Foodservice Equipment Group increased 10.2%, while Middleby Corp.’s revenues, less its industrial products, were up 8.8%. Manitowoc Foodservice saw a 6.9% gain and ITW’s total Food Equipment Group, which includes retail products and service, said “organic revenues” grew 6.4%. The ITW gain is significant as its companies are the most spec-oriented of the equipment companies. It signals that even the lagging spec market is beginning to recover.

Sales at Carlisle rose 0.2%. Libbey said its foodservice sales rose 1%.

The 6.7% blended gain for the publics compare with a 4% increase in overall first quarter sales versus year prior by the latest Business Barometer from the Manufacturers’ Agents Association for the Foodservice Industry. The broader MAFSI Barometer often is less volatile up or down than sales from the public E&S companies.

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