Rocky Brands, Inc. Announces Third Quarter Fiscal 2011 Results

NELSONVILLE, Ohio--(BUSINESS WIRE)-- Rocky Brands, Inc. (Nasdaq: RCKY) today announced financial results for its third quarter ended September 30, 2011.

Third quarter 2011 net income improved to $5.2 million or $0.70 per diluted share versus net income of $4.7 million or $0.63 per diluted share in the year ago period. Net sales were $71.0 million versus net sales of $74.8 million a year ago. The decrease in sales was due to reduced sales under military contracts and the discontinuation of the Dickies license which expired December 31, 2010. This was partially offset by increased sales from continuing operations.

David Sharp, President and Chief Executive Officer, commented, “We experienced growth in several areas of our wholesale business during the third quarter. Western sales increased 11% on higher demand for both Durango and Rocky branded product. Our hunting category was also up versus a year ago while gains in our Georgia Boot brand helped to partially offset the loss of the Dickies license in our work segment. We were particularly pleased with the performance of our commercial military business. This sales initiative has surpassed initial expectations as the product line has quickly gained traction within the military community. With regard to our retail division, operating profit improved meaningfully on slightly lower sales compared to a year ago as we continue to benefit from higher gross margins and reduced expenses. We are optimistic about the current pace of our overall business and continue to be excited about the longer-term growth strategies we are developing for our brands.”

Third Quarter Review

Net sales for the third quarter were $71.0 million compared to $74.8 million a year ago. Wholesale sales for the third quarter were $60.2 million compared to $59.4 million for the same period in 2010. Retail sales for the third quarter were $10.3 million compared to $11.0 million for the same period last year. Military segment sales for the third quarter decreased to $0.4 million compared to $4.3 million in the same period in 2010.

Gross margin in the third quarter of 2011 was $25.6 million, or 36.0% of net sales compared to $27.2 million, or 36.4% of net sales for the same period last year. The 40 basis point decrease was primarily due to an increase in product costs.

Selling, general and administrative (SG&A) expenses were $18.0 million or 25.4% of net sales, for the third quarter of 2011 compared to $19.2 million, or 25.6% of net sales a year ago. The $1.2 million decrease is primarily due to lower compensation expense as a result of reduced headcount.

Income from operations was $7.6 million, or 10.6% of net sales, compared to $8.0 million, or 10.8% of net sales, in the prior year period.

Interest expense decreased to $0.3 million for the third quarter of 2011 versus $1.0 million for the same period last year. The decrease is attributable to lower interest rates as the result of the new $70 million revolving credit facility signed in October 2010.

The Company’s effective tax rate for the third quarter of 2011 was 29.7% compared to 36.0% in the third quarter of 2010. For fiscal 2011, the Company’s effective tax rate is now estimated to be 32.6%, compared to its previous estimate of 35.0%. The lower effective tax rate is the result of additional permanent capital investment in the Company’s Dominican Republic operations.

The Company’s funded debt was $60.1 million at September 30, 2011 versus $53.4 million at September 30, 2010.

Inventory increased 25.4% to $78.9 million at September 30, 2011 compared with $62.9 million on the same date a year ago. The increase in inventory was the result of an increase in cost per unit as well as an increase in units. The increase in units was the result of lower than anticipated sales in the quarter. Inventory units are expected to be near prior year levels at year end.

Defined Benefit Pension Plan

The Company announced it will terminate its Defined Benefit Pension Plan which was frozen at the end of 2005. As a result, the Company will record a one-time, non-operational charge of approximately $3.2 million, net of tax, during the fourth quarter 2011.

Conference Call Information

The Company’s conference call to review third quarter fiscal 2011 results will be broadcast live over the internet today, Wednesday, October 26, 2011 at 4:30 pm Eastern Time. The broadcast will be hosted at

About Rocky Brands, Inc.

Rocky Brands, Inc. is a leading designer, manufacturer and marketer of premium quality footwear and apparel marketed under a portfolio of well recognized brand names including Rocky®, Georgia Boot®, Durango®, Lehigh®, and the licensed brands Michelin® and Mossy Oak®.

Safe Harbor Statement under the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995

This press release contains certain forward-looking statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, and Section 21E of the Securities and Exchange Act of 1934, as amended, which are intended to be covered by the safe harbors created thereby. Those statements include, but may not be limited to, all statements regarding intent, beliefs, expectations, projections, forecasts, and plans of the Company and its management, and include statements in this press release regarding long-term growth strategies (paragraph 3), the Company’s estimated effective tax rate (paragraph 10), inventory levels (paragraph 11), and the expected termination of the Defined Benefit Pension Plan and the one-time, non-operating charge (paragraph 12). These forward-looking statements involve numerous risks and uncertainties, including, without limitation, the various risks inherent in the Company’s business as set forth in periodic reports filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including the Company’s annual report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2010 (filed March 2, 2011) and the Company’s quarterly reports on Form 10-Q for the quarters ended March 31, 2011 (filed May 3, 2011) and June 30, 2011 (filed July 29, 2011). One or more of these factors have affected historical results, and could in the future affect the Company’s businesses and financial results in future periods and could cause actual results to differ materially from plans and projections. Therefore there can be no assurance that the forward-looking statements included in this press release will prove to be accurate. In light of the significant uncertainties inherent in the forward-looking statements included herein, the Company, or any other person should not regard the inclusion of such information as a representation that the objectives and plans of the Company will be achieved. All forward-looking statements made in this press release are based on information presently available to the management of the Company. The Company assumes no obligation to update any forward-looking statements.

Rocky Brands, Inc. and Subsidiaries
Condensed Consolidated Balance Sheets
September 30, 2011 December 31, 2010 September 30, 2010
Unaudited Audited Unaudited
Cash and cash equivalents $ 3,330,196 $ 4,362,531 $ 3,965,906
Trade receivables – net 63,339,879 47,593,807 61,261,175
Other receivables 1,055,666 911,103 1,319,589
Inventories 78,887,067 58,852,556 62,913,777
Deferred income taxes 1,238,989 1,218,101 1,490,601
Prepaid expenses   2,822,954     1,793,852     1,494,653  
Total current assets 150,674,751 114,731,950 132,445,701
FIXED ASSETS – net 23,572,687 22,129,282 22,114,258
IDENTIFIED INTANGIBLES 30,505,267 30,495,485 30,504,785
OTHER ASSETS   737,489     1,222,712     1,896,914  
TOTAL ASSETS $ 205,490,194   $ 168,579,429   $ 186,961,658  
Accounts payable $ 11,054,561 $ 9,024,851 $ 9,449,927
Current maturities – long term debt 2,955 487,480 508,376
Accrued expenses:
Taxes - other 420,082 590,217 490,978
Income tax payable 1,916,316 422,229 2,280,900
Other   8,232,441     6,050,964     6,612,636  
Total current liabilities 21,626,355 16,575,741 19,342,817
LONG TERM DEBT – less current maturities 60,054,291 34,608,338 52,910,608
DEFERRED INCOME TAXES 9,521,852 9,374,685 9,060,211
DEFERRED LIABILITIES   535,937     3,017,107     3,925,393  
TOTAL LIABILITIES 91,738,435 63,575,871 85,239,029
Common stock, no par value;

25,000,000 shares authorized; issued and outstanding
September 30, 2011 - 7,489,995; December 31, 2010 -
7,426,787; September 30, 2010 - 7,409,537




Accumulated other comprehensive loss (2,608,298 ) (2,828,989 ) (2,947,290 )
Retained earnings   46,814,029     38,780,446     35,741,935  
Total shareholders' equity   113,751,759     105,003,558     101,722,629  
TOTAL LIABILITIES AND SHAREHOLDERS' EQUITY $ 205,490,194   $ 168,579,429   $ 186,961,658  
Rocky Brands, Inc. and Subsidiaries
Condensed Consolidated Statements of Operations
Three Months Ended Nine Months Ended
September 30, September 30,
2011 2010 2011 2010
NET SALES $ 71,020,546 $ 74,760,244 $ 175,609,453 $ 186,062,284
COST OF GOODS SOLD   45,430,389     47,575,649     110,136,023     121,021,756  
GROSS MARGIN 25,590,157 27,184,595 65,473,430 65,040,528
ADMINISTRATIVE EXPENSES   18,026,065     19,159,541     53,108,445     53,347,582  
INCOME FROM OPERATIONS 7,564,092 8,025,054 12,364,985 11,692,946
Interest expense (252,858 ) (955,033 ) (760,844 ) (4,721,176 )
Other – net   106,033     246,334     153,442     286,451  
Total other - net (146,825 ) (708,699 ) (607,402 ) (4,434,725 )
INCOME/(LOSS) BEFORE INCOME TAXES 7,417,267 7,316,355 11,757,583 7,258,221
INCOME TAX EXPENSE/(BENEFIT)   2,205,000     2,634,000     3,724,000     2,613,000  
NET INCOME/(LOSS) $ 5,212,267   $ 4,682,355   $ 8,033,583   $ 4,645,221  
Basic $ 0.70 $ 0.63 $ 1.07 $ 0.71
Diluted $ 0.70 $ 0.63 $ 1.07 $ 0.71
Basic   7,489,995     7,407,409     7,485,529     6,522,058  
Diluted   7,489,995     7,422,194     7,486,250     6,541,192  

Rocky Brands, Inc.:
Jim McDonald, 740-753-1951
Investor Relations:
ICR, Inc.
Brendon Frey, 203-682-8200
Chief Financial Officer

Source: Rocky Brands, Inc.